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Grogans pub in Dublin postpones reopening over 'frustrating' lack of guidelines

The owners of Grogans pub in Dublin city centre have postponed their reopening  as they're 'stil...
Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

13.12 14 Jul 2020


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Grogans pub in Dublin postpone...

Grogans pub in Dublin postpones reopening over 'frustrating' lack of guidelines

Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

13.12 14 Jul 2020


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The owners of Grogans pub in Dublin city centre have postponed their reopening  as they're 'still in the dark' about the guidelines they will need to follow.

Under the existing reopening plans, all pubs are set to be allowed reopen from next Monday, July 20th.

However, officials have raised concerns about whether that can go ahead amid recent increases in coronavirus cases.

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Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn last night suggested it was "too early to say" whether pubs will get the go-ahead to open on Monday.

Grogans announced on social media last night that they were postponing their reopening for at least a week due to the uncertainty.

Daniel Smith of Grogans spoke to Lunchtime Live about their decision - saying they are 'none the clearer' about the situation despite only being six days out of the proposed reopening date.

He said: "We don't know what sort of capacity we're going to have to have, therefore we don't know what sort of stock we need, how many staff we need... there's a whole lot of logistical issues involved.

"We just felt if the guidelines were to be published today or tomorrow, we wouldn't have time to implement them and sort out all the logistical issues that are involved with that."

'We don't serve a substantial meal - we serve toasted sandwiches'

Officials have indicated the 'vast majority' of the guidelines for pubs will be similar to restaurants and other parts of the hospitality sector that have already been allowed reopen.

However, Daniel observed: "There's definitely going to be similarities... but I feel like it's not sufficient really when there's going to be tweaks in it.

"We don't serve a substantial meal - we serve toasted sandwiches. That 105 minutes guidance is all geared towards a restaurant sort of environment.

"We don't know if we're going to have to adhere to 105 minutes, or what the social distancing requirements would be.

"Because of that, we just didn't feel we'd have sufficient time to prepare adequately to open on Monday [while] ensuring the safety of our customers and staff."

Daniel said it's frustrating to have been given a reopening date almost two months ago and to still be left in the dark.

He said: "If the public health advice dictates we can't open next Monday, that's absolutely fine and we have absolutely no problem with that. The issue is in that we have no idea what we need to do to reopen. We have guidelines from previous stages, but we don't have a definitive set of guidelines that we need to adhere to.

"I don't think we're going to be as busy as we always were as we won't have the capacity to be as busy. But from anecdotal messages we've got on Twitter and Instagram, there seems to be a lot of goodwill and a lot of people really looking forward to getting back."

He stressed that it's important people "know they are going into somewhere they will feel safe" - but that can't be done if publicans don't have the guidelines they need to follow.

Main image: File photo of Grogans pub in Dublin. Photo: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

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