Here’s a useful checklist for pubs, bars, restaurants and cafés, on the key issues of preventing the spread of Coronavirus:
2 Metre Social distancing – this is the law in Wales and anyone responsible for an ‘open premises’ must take reasonable measures to ensure that a distance of 2 metres is maintained between any persons on the premises, whether customers or staff (except between members of the same household, social /family ‘bubble’ or a carer and the person assisted by the carer). This includes people waiting to enter the premises in a queue.
No vertical drinking – Customers should not be standing and drinking, this includes smoking areas, consumption of food or drink should only take place at tables.
Entertainment – there should be no live entertainment of any kind Indoors or Outside e.g. live bands, performers, comedy. Dancing should not be permitted and any recorded music should be played at background volume levels only. Singing is believed to increase the spread virus particles in the air and if recorded music is played too loud, this encourages customers to have to speak louder and move closer together to be heard, thereby more likely to pass virus particles in the air.
Track and Trace – it is a legal requirement for premises to record the contact details of every person on the premises, or lead member from a household group, and keep this for 21 days for the purpose of providing it to a Public Health Officer on request. People refusing to provide details should not be permitted entry. Further details can be found here:
Limiting face to face interactions – this can involve changing the layout of the premises, location of furniture and workstations, controlling use of entrances, passageways and stairs, controlling use of shared facilities such as toilets and kitchens. You may wish to consider installing barriers or screens. It is advised that you use contactless payment where available.
Maintain Hygiene – A regular cleaning regime should be put in place and you should consider Personal Protective equipment (PPE) for staff as well and easily accessible hygiene, such as hand sanitiser being available to customers. You should be cleaning public areas more often than before covid-19 restrictions were in place and you may wish to consider tasking a member of staff with the duty of managing the cleaning operation. Toilet areas should be regularly cleaned and the numbers visiting them at any one time restricted.
Recording processes and providing information – you should prepare a Risk Assessment for your premises and this will help identify any hazards and actions that need to be taken. You should provide as much information to the customer. This can be through posters, floor markings and notices. Remember that some customers may be nervous and will not be familiar with the new rules, so a friendly staff member at the door, explaining the process and guiding them to a table, can be a positive way to create a safe and comfortable environment for customers. A template Risk Assessment can be found at.
Social Media – Social media platforms, like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram can be a valuable tool to provide information to your customers. You may want to consider uploading photos or videos of your new processes. Social media can also be used as a way of receiving messages or managing bookings. If customers know what to expect before they enter your premises, they are more likely to adhere to the rules and help you manage things smoothly.
Closing Times – be aware of the closing times of your neighbouring premises. Many premises are closing earlier than normal and you should make yourself aware of this in case you have an influx of people heading to your premises after others have shut.
Outside Areas and Off Sales – new legislation has temporarily given all licensed premises having ‘on sales’ the facility to sell alcohol for consumption ‘off the premises’ if it was not already permitted. If you have an area outside your premises that you are permitted to use, such as a yard or car park, you can place tables and chairs in these areas for consumption off the premises. Pavements in the town centre are subject to ‘Pavement Permits’ and you will need to apply for a permit if you wish to allow customers to consume food or drink in that area.
Staff Training and Responsibilities – Extra training of staff will be required to ensure that they are fully aware of the measures in place. Staff should be briefed on the requirements imposed by your risk assessment and be prepared to remind customers of their obligations whilst on the premises. You may wish to delegate certain tasks to staff- e.g. have a member of staff responsible for maintaining social distancing while the premises is open.