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Advice for licensed pubs during the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation

24 Mar 2020

Pubs that are still open for people to consume food and drink on the premises will face prohibition notices, potentially unlimited fines and the loss of their alcohol licence, new legislation has stated.

The list of businesses that must close include pubs, nightclubs, and bars (including bars in hotels or members’ clubs).

The Government confirmed these venues should have closed from Saturday 21 March and the measures will be “reviewed every 28 days to consider the necessity and effectiveness in light of changing circumstances”.

As of 2pm last Saturday (21 March), closures are now enforceable by law in England and Wales due to the threat to public health and businesses that operate in contravention of the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Business Closures) Regulations 2020 will be committing an offence.

Monitoring compliance

Horsham District Council’s Environmental Health and Licensing team and Trading Standards Officers will monitor compliance with these regulations, with police support if appropriate.

Offering takeaway services

However, pubs with off-sales licences can still offer takeaways (of both food and drink) during this period and planning rules have currently been relaxed to assist this.

Please note, operators who are offering takeaway or delivery services must not include alcohol if their licence does not permit off-sales of alcohol.

Pubs that are now operating as a Pop up Shop are allowed to continue to sell essential items as long as the customer buys their items and leave the premises immediately, this includes any outside areas within the boundary of the licensed premises.