Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

07.05 23 Nov 2020


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The Vintners Federation of Ireland wants all pubs to be allowed open from December 1st.

The organisation also doesn't believe it would be a good idea for pubs to be required to close at 10pm when level five restrictions are lifted - suggesting that shutting them early would lead to more house parties.

With just a week of the current lockdown remaining, Government is set to make an announcement later this week on what restrictions will look like for December.

Ministers will discuss the plan during their Cabinet meetings this week, with an announcement tentatively scheduled for Thursday.

It's expected there will be level three style restrictions for most of the month, before an easing of some of the restrictions on household visits and travel to other counties for Christmas week.

While many politicians want shops, restaurants and pubs to open in some capacity next month, NPHET has expressed concern that coronavirus case numbers haven't declined as much as hoped in the last few weeks.

VFI chief executive Padraig Cribben says all pub owners want to be able to serve customers inside.

He said: "We have been very clear all along that what we really need is a period of time when there will be both drinking and dining inside; that there will be no differentiation between any type of pub; and that the determinant on capacity will be the capability to social distance. "

He argued that closing pubs early is something that will create "more and more house parties", adding that figures show private homes is "where the real problem is".

Main image: File photo. Picture by: Philip Toscano/PA Archive/PA Images

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