The government has forced the UK into lockdown, following the coronavirus outbreak. The public are
only permitted to leave their homes for very limited reasons and have been warned to avoid social
gatherings or face sanctions.

Many businesses in the hospitality sector including restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs have been
branded non-essential and have been forced to close.

These premises should not ignore the government decision as they could face large fines and/or risk
premises licences being reviewed
. Pubs which have been caught having lock-ins, in breach of
the government decision, risk enforcement action.

The government has set out enforcement plans for the closure of these businesses. Environmental
Health and Trading Standards Officers will monitor compliance and work alongside the police to take
appropriate enforcement action.

Government initiative to help restaurants, cafes and pubs to continue

The government is looking at relaxing planning rules, for a temporary period of time, so that pubs
(class A4) and cafes and restaurants (class A3) can operate as hot food takeaways during this
unprecedented time. Planning permission would usually be required for this change of use. Operators
should check their premises licences for their permitted licensable activities as these permissions will
continue to apply. Operators wishing to sell hot food and / or hot drinks between the hours of 11pm
and 5am will need a licence. If an operator does not have permission to sell alcohol for consumption
off the premises, it will not be able to do so as this will continue to be subject to permissions set out
in the Operator’s premises licence.

** Further advice can be sought from us.

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