Vintners Association says most pubs can not afford to reopen with two-metre social distancing

Vintners Association says most pubs can not afford to reopen with two-metre social distancing
The CEO of the Licensed Vintners Association says it will not make sense to reopen with a fraction of their seating capacity.

Most pubs will not be able to afford reopening with a two-metre social distance policy in place.

That is according to the Licensed Vintners Association which is calling on the distance to be reduced to one.

Business Minister Heather Humphreys has conceded the regulation will cause problems for the hospitality sector but says the guidelines are being reviewed ahead of June 29.

Donall O'Keeffe, CEO of the Licensed Vintners Association says it will not make sense to reopen with a fraction of their seating capacity.

He says: "We retained a firm of consultant engineers to assess the impact on pub capacities.

"In terms of our drinking space with a two-metre gap, we are down to one-eighth, just 12% of normal capacity, so its clearly not commercially viable in our standing areas.

"In our seated areas for diners, our capacity is one-third of normal, so again the two-metres is simply not going to be commercially viable."

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