Euro 2020: Pub landlords say they can’t police cheering if England make a winning start – despite Covid advice

Pub landlords have said they will be unable to police jubilant scenes and cheering supporters should England get off to a winning start at Euro 2020.

Unlike previous tournaments, Three Lions fans cannot cram into pubs and bars across the country owing to coronavirus guidelines in place until 21 June.

Current rules mean that all drinks must be served by table service only, face coverings are required when walking inside and the Rule of Six will apply indoors at socially-distanced tables.

Up to 30 people can meet in a pub beer garden in England and Wales but numbers vary in Scotland depending on an area’s Covid alert level.

The British Beer and Pub Association has encouraged licensees to consider sound levels, the position of TV screens and monitor smoking areas.

Andy Evans, landlord of The Cricketers Arms in St Helens, Merseyside, plans to show all the matches during the tournament and has ensured his venue, named 2017 Pub of the Year, is Covid-secure.

All customers will sign in using the NHS Covid-19 app and televisions will be spaced out to ensure there is no congestion.

He said: “We’re constantly reminding customers that we’re not out of the woods yet. All our staff have been briefed and we’re trying to reinforce the rules – but we’re going to enjoy the tournament and hopefully England will do well.”

But if the team is successful Mr Evans said licensees are going to have a tough time telling people to calm down.

“To ask a person not to cheer in a pub when England scores a goal… how are you going to police that? If [people] cheer I’m sure we can’t do anything about that,” he said with a laugh.

His remarks were echoed at The Crooked Billet in Clapton, east London, where a spokesman said: “We’re operating within the Government guidelines [and] we’ll be keeping volume down to a certain extent. But even if the TVs were on mute and England scored it’s not going to stop people from cheering.”

The pub will be “walk-in” only during the England matches and security guards will manage queues. “For past tournaments we’ve been filled to the rafters but this year our total capacity will fall from about 1,400 to 400,” they added.

Earlier this week, a survey found that 85 per cent of football fans felt Covid rules will ruin Euro 2020 for them this summer.

Meanwhile, industry insiders hope restrictions will lift for matches after 21 June to enable pubs to recoup sales from lost pints.

One source told i: “I suspect there will be a lot of people who will watch the games at home with friends and family because pubs have limited space. Given the past [15] months, pubs could do with an economic boost.

“We’re awaiting the Government announcement that will hopefully enable people to watch the games in pubs without restrictions.”

The Department for Business, Enterprise, Energy and Industrial Strategy said government guidelines will not change this weekend.

A spokesperson said: “Pubs should continue to adhere to current advice, including ensuring customers remain seated and social distancing is maintained at all times between different groups of customers. Public safety must remain our priority.”


About the author

Related Post

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *