Following the Government’s announcement to allow more premises to re-open, including hotels, pubs, bars, restaurants, hairdressers, museums, cinemas and places of worship, Stockport’s hospitality sector is preparing to welcome back customers from Saturday July 4th.
Under the new guidance, where it is not possible or practical to maintain the 2 metre rule around social distancing, a new 1 metre rule has been introduced, coinciding with the easing of lockdown that now allows for pubs, bars and restaurants to open from 4th July. Business owners, tenants and managers have just 10 days to prepare their premises and staff for reopening in line with new guidance and rules designed to create a Covid-19 safe and secure environment.
Prior to opening, management will be obliged to have carried out a thorough risk assessment, a step-by-step analysis to address all areas and to confirm all new mandatory measures have been introduced. The risk assessment must have been undertaken in consultation with unions or workers and the results shared among employees, ideally published on the company’s website, and publicly displayed. Templates to assist with undertaking the risk assessment can be downloaded from the HSE website.
The Government has produced guidance to assist with implementing the new, mandatory measures – Keeping workers and customers safe during Covid-19 in restaurants, pubs, bars and take-away services, updated in line with the new legislation as of 23rd June 2020.
Cllr David Meller, Cabinet Member for Regeneration & Economy said:
We are all working hard to provide answers and to support our local businesses as they navigate their way through the new guidance so they can be sure their customers can return with confidence. We are still waiting for final guidance on a number of issues which we will make available via the council’s website as soon as possible.
“We are ready to assist with interpreting the new guidance and will provide advice if changes are required to existing licence conditions – for instance, where pavements or other outdoor areas could provide additional outside eating or drinking spaces. However, as it stands, applications for a variance to any license will need to be applied for in the usual way.”
To assist with the NHS’s current test, track and trace programme to control the spread of coronavirus, customers will be required to register their name and contact details to be used in the event that a fellow customer develops symptoms. Many businesses that take bookings already have systems for recording their customers and visitors – including restaurants, hotels, and hair salons. If you do not already do this, you should do so to help fight the virus. Stockport Council will work with industry and relevant bodies to design this system in line with data protection legislation and will set out details shortly.
For the most up to date information concerning the Covid-19 crisis, please visit the government website.