Pub-goers in England wrapped themselves in scarves and woolly hats tonight as the ongoing ban on households mixing indoors for most of the country forced punters to brave cool outdoor seating areas.
The drop in temperatures didn't stop friends in Tier 2 from meeting in bars and restaurants for the first time in a month – and as darkness fell in London, many were tucked into their "hearty meal" outdoors.
The three alert levels with varying degrees of severity, which today replaced the national lockdown, manifested themselves in strikingly different social scenes in English cities.
In tier 3 areas such as Manchester, where pubs and restaurants are only open takeout, a normally lively pub scene has been muted.
While the two percent of people living under the loosest of measures in Tier 1 – only the Isle of Wight, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly – only partied in the pubs with the 11pm curfew and the six-point rule.
The rulebook in the pubs means that today's reopening is a world away from the wild Super Saturday in July, when bars greeted punters again after the initial lockdown.
Pub-goers in England clad in scarves and woolen hats tonight as the indoor mixing ban forced many to brave cool outdoor seating areas (Soho in London pictured)
As darkness fell and temperatures plummeted, customers put on warm clothing as they toasted bars and restaurants reopening for the first time in a month
In London's Soho district, some venues have set up pavilions to protect people from the cold and installed heaters
Many tier 2 pubs have set up outdoor dining areas to accommodate customers who want to meet friends from another household
Many tier 2 pubs have set up outdoor dining areas to accommodate customers who want to meet friends from another household.
In London's Soho district, some venues have set up pavilions to protect people from the cold and installed heaters.
Boris Johnson now supported savvy pub landlords who use takeaways to provide customers with a "full meal".
Downing Street has given the thumbs up to "wet pubs" – that usually don't serve meals – to team up with local fast food outlets to keep pulling pints.
A spokesman said, however, that pubs will need to reach an agreement with "local restaurants" to comply with England's new Covid Tier 2 rules.
Punters are not allowed to bring their own groceries to a pub – they pour cold water on plans to use grocery delivery services like Deliveroo.
New rules that came into effect in England today mean that landlords in Tier 2 areas can only sell alcoholic beverages with a "substantial meal".
But the rules have created a dilemma for landlords in pubs with no kitchens – some are turning to serving takeaway to keep pints going.
The rulebook in the pubs means that today's reopening is a world away from the wild Super Saturday in July when the bars greeted punters again after the first lockdown (Soho tonight).
Crowds came to London, which has been put on high alert, which means pubs can open when they are serving a hearty meal
New rules that came into effect in England today mean that landlords in Tier 2 areas can only sell alcoholic beverages with a "substantial meal".
Landlords in Tier 2 areas can only sell alcoholic beverages with an “extensive meal” under new rules that come into force in England today. That's why the Brewer & # 39; s Arms in Worcester has partnered with a local chippie to make food serving possible
Michael Sutton sticks his pie and chips from St. John & # 39; s Fish Bar with a pint at Brewers Arms in Worcester
A pub in Worcester today teamed up with a local fish and chip shop to provide food for drinkers.
Meanwhile, a bar in central London plans to allow customers to order from McDonald's to bypass the rules.
However, Downing Street said today that pub-goers and landlords will need to use their judgment to decide what complies with the coronavirus restrictions.
When asked whether Deliveroo orders could be sent to pubs to meet the "large meal" requirement in Tier 2 areas, the Prime Minister's official spokesman said customers are prohibited from bringing in groceries bought elsewhere.
"It is up to both customers and venues to act sensibly and use good judgment when complying with these regulations," said the spokesman.
“For example, companies that don't normally serve food can contract out with other local restaurants so they can do so and stay open.
"However, it is still prohibited to allow customers to bring food into the premises that has been purchased elsewhere to consume alcohol."
Michael Selsby enjoys an "extensive" sausage and fries from a nearby takeaway with his pint of apple cider in the pub
Sarah Mowatt, 26, nursed a San Miguel after going straight to the pub after hearing they'd reopened
Damian Brady, 66, enjoyed a drink over asparagus with regulars Steve Baker, 65, and boyfriend Sidney
Eager pub-goers returned to the pub for a beer this morning (Image: Two people enjoying a drink at Five Degree West in Falmouth, Cornwall)
What can you do on each row in a pub?
- Tier 1 – Pubs are open to alcohol or food, and people from different households are allowed to sit together.
- Rank 2 – Pubs can only serve alcohol with a “substantial meal”. People from different households can only sit outside and have to follow the “rule of six”. Those who sit at the same table in the pub must come from the same household.
- Tier 3 – Pubs are closed to everything except take away.
It is because avid pub goers returned to the watering holes this morning for a full English breakfast and beer after being locked out for a month during the national closure.
One man even filmed himself knocking back a pint of Guinness while eating breakfast in a Wetherspoon pub today.
But on Wethersoon's scolding, he cursed the restrictions after claiming she only ordered three pints.
Keith Hill, 57, who was drinking in the rising sun in Redditch, Worcestershire, told the sun, “I'm limited to three pints which will be gone in an hour. So I'll go to the pub for a few more days. «
While most pub goers today enjoyed a happy and stress-free return to the watering holes across England, wet pub owners have had to look for ways to reopen.
In Worcester, a no-kitchen pub works with a nearby fish and chip shop to stay open on Tier 2 rules.
Mark and Debie Daniels from The Brewers Arms who don't have a kitchen have teamed up with Nick Zipiti from St John & # 39; s Fish Bar.
This means The Brewers Arms can continue to draw pints – which they otherwise couldn't do without serving a hearty meal alongside.
The pub is open during the normal chip shop hours and customers are asked to order food from the bar before they can buy a drink.
Ms. Daniels told MailOnline, "I called the commercial standards regulatory services," and the council's licensing officer did everything we could.
“We have checked all the boxes and everything is fine.
“I'm very excited that two companies are now joining forces to make the pub open.
The Brewers Arms (pictured) is partnering with a nearby fish and chip shop to stay open according to Tier 2 rules
This means The Brewers Arms can continue to draw pints – which they otherwise couldn't do without serving a hearty meal alongside
Mark and Debie Daniels of The Brewers Arms (pictured left), who don't have a kitchen, have teamed up with Nick Zipiti (pictured right) of St John & # 39; s Fish Bar, according to Worcester News
The pub is open during the normal chip shop hours and customers are asked to order food from the bar before they can buy a drink
The pub works with the nearby St. John's Fish Bar in Worcester so they can offer a "full meal" to sell their pints
“It is important for our customers to leave the house. There is a different atmosphere around them than sitting alone.
"It allows them to meet and have a few hours to share a few chats and something to eat."
She added, “Without customers we cannot function and will do whatever we can to generate cash flow and pay the bills.
& # 39; We have to open during chip shop hours but that's only for two weeks and hopefully we can open longer after that. We just see how to do it.
& # 39; The food aspect of our opening is not profitable for us. We don't do anything with the food. Nick even lowered his prices on certain foods. We're still losing a lot. & # 39;
Eric Chestnutt from Ryde, Isle of Wight, drinks at the Crown Hotel Pub. The Isle of Wight is ranked Tier 1 along with Cornwall and the Isles of Scily, which means no essential meal is required to purchase alcohol
Nick Zipiti, 39, owner of St. John's Fish Bar, said, “I think this is great and it will help save jobs.
“I have a licensed kitchen and they don't – so it was an easy fix. I thought & # 39; why not? & # 39;
Chris Hall, 68, of Worcester, a retired contract cleaner, said, “It's great, I use this pub seven days a week.
"I'm excited, not sure how things will go from here, but we hope it goes well and everyone appreciates what we are doing and enjoys a bit of pub time after a long time."
One customer, Chris Hall, 68, of Worcester, a retired contract cleaner, was happy with the deal. He said, “It's great, I use this pub seven days a week.
“I think using the Chippy is a smart idea and I didn't think they'd let it, but obviously they have.
“It's great that the pub is open again and I hope it continues.
"Hopefully we'll get to Tier 1 soon and that means they can open properly again."
Steve Owen, 67, from Worcester, a retired truck driver, said, “I usually get down here four or five times a week.
“It's a great idea to support two companies at the same time.
"It will be good to be back to normal at some point, and I think it will fall to Tier 1 soon."
Dave Lampitt, 67, from Worcester, a retired maintenance worker, said, “It's ideal because I like the Chippy Shop too.
“We need to have something to eat, but we're still in a pub.
"Whether you have a drink or something to eat, we are still here and that is the main thing as other areas have not been so lucky."
It is because other pubs are dealing with Tier 2 rules – including serving scotch eggs with their drinks.
A barmaid at the Windmill Pub, Mayfair, London, was pictured today serving beer with a Scottish egg and a sausage roll today.
It is because other pubs are dealing with Tier 2 rules – including serving scotch eggs with their drinks
A barmaid in the Windmill Pub in Mayfair, London, pictured today serving beer with a Scottish egg and a sausage roll
Meanwhile, an owner at The Star Pub in Oxford vowed to sell scotch eggs if that meant they could keep pulling pints.
Gus Rogers, the new owner of The Star Pub on Rectory Road, told Oxford Mail, "The Scottish egg thing is ridiculous – but when the government says we need Scottish eggs, we get Scottish eggs."
Another host in a pub jokingly renamed an ale to "Substantial Meal" to circumvent the new Covid-19 restrictions.
Brett Mendoza, 40, who owns the Caxton Arms in Brighton, East Sussex, got the idea while discussing what constitutes an essential meal with another landlord after the latest moves were announced last week.
Brett Mendoza (right), 40, who owns the Caxton Arms in Brighton, came up with the idea (left) as a joke while discussing with another landlord what constitutes an essential meal
An image of the fake beer pump clip, taken from the "made-up brewery" and described as "hearty, filling and tasty," was posted on social media last Wednesday titled "Bring on Tier 2".
The post garnered over 1,600 likes and more than 200 shares, with one social media user commenting: "Together with a bag of chips and a pickled egg, a meal that's enough for everyone."
Another simply tweeted, "Brilliant," while a third added, "I love this".
Meanwhile, G-A-Y-Bar in London's Soho district is a pub that wants take-away help.
The bar does not normally serve food. But it is preparing for customers to have McDonald's delivered to bypass the rules.
However, such a system can be prevented according to the guidelines issued today by Downing Street.
Owner Jeremy Joseph told the Sun, "McDonald's was chosen for its cheap menu, which means anyone can socialize regardless of their budget."
It is because Matt Hancock dodged the question today of whether pubs and takeaways in tier 2 areas could join forces to keep waterholes serving alcohol.
Speaking to Sky News today, Mr. Hancock was repeatedly asked if a wet pub could have a takeaway delivered to serve alcoholic beverages to customers in Tier 2.
One pub that wants take-away help is G-A-Y-Bar in Soho, London. The bar does not normally serve food
But the Soho Bar is preparing for customers to have McDonald's delivered to bypass the rules
In the last round of interviews, where cabinet ministers faced grilling food in pubs, the health minister did not say whether watering holes could use takeaway services to keep pint pouring
Guests can eat outside of central London restaurants for the next six months
Guests will be able to dine al fresco outside of central London restaurants for the next six months, as it became known today.
Pubs and restaurants in the capital are allowed to reopen tomorrow under the Tier 2 coronavirus rules, as can much of the rest of the country.
Diners are allowed to eat together as long as a maximum of six people sit together and everyone in the group comes from the same support bubble or household when seated indoors.
And Westminster Council has announced that the new rules that allow groups of up to six people to eat outdoors in mixed households starting tomorrow will continue for another six months.
Council President Rachael Robathan said the program, which will allow venues to provide pop-up dining areas in streets, is an important way to support the hospitality industry.
She said: “We have 3,700 restaurants, pubs and bars in central London that support around 80,000 jobs.
"Hospitality is a big place to work for us, and while the sector still has some tough months ahead of the rest of the Tier 2 constraints, we can at least support those venues that can offer outdoor space."
At the same time, Westminster City Council has launched a "Shop Safe" campaign highlighting the steps the agency has taken to make the streets as safe as possible.
These include widening sidewalks, installing 11 km of bike paths, signage for social distances, and hand sanitizing stations across the city.
A social media campaign launched on Wednesday by Westminster City Council will underline the safety messages.
He said, “We have made the legal principles very clear about what is expected and what is not. If you break this law, it is clearly stated. & # 39;
He added: “It is up to the courts to interpret each individual case. We will absolutely prevail against these laws. & # 39;
He continued: “The courts interpret the law established by parliament for this country.
“When people break this law, the courts must determine it based on individual circumstances.
"I don't think it is acceptable to go beyond the limits of these rules and it is up to the courts to interpret the law."
Meanwhile, today's debate over the Scotch Egg Gate is raging – the dispute over whether or not a Scotch egg can be an essential meal.
Mr Hancock appeared to be causing confusion over the treatment of eggs and meat in bed after Ministers blurred the lines with repeated changes of course yesterday.
Cabinet Secretary Michael Gove gave three different lines in three different interviews yesterday morning when asked about scotch eggs, which have become an unusual but important topic of conversation in the government's new Covid-19 tier system.
Regarding Scottish eggs, Hancock told Sky News, “A full meal is an established concept of hospitality.
“A Scottish egg, of course, served as an essential meal – that is an essential meal.
"We don't have to try to cross borders, we all have to take responsibility for our own actions."
He added, “The rules are the two different types of hospitality – those who obviously serve meals and those who don't.
"So a starter can be an essential meal, you can have a Scottish egg as a starter."
He said he wanted to move away from "picking at the borders".
It comes like yesterday when a dispute deepened over whether a Scottish egg can be classified as an "essential meal" under rules that only allow alcohol to be served with food from today.
Cabinet Secretary Michael Gove told LBC two Scottish eggs would be "a starter" 24 hours after Environment Secretary George Eustice said one was a significant meal.
Mr Gove reiterated his stance on LBC in a second interview on Good Morning Britain yesterday – before tracing ITV News and then saying, "A Scottish egg is an essential meal."
A number has broken out on whether a Scottish egg can be classified as an "essential meal".
Kings Head in Gosfield, Essex offers £ 1.99 plates on a & # 39; Boris Menu & # 39; like a hot dog and chips. baked beans on toast with cheese; and cheeseburgers and fries
London and Liverpool are ranked Tier 2, while only the Isle of Wight, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly are on the bottom tier
Anger over the government's one-time payment of £ 1,000 for "wet" drunkards
Pub landlords have warned that the tier system will put traditional old-fashioned pubs out of business after ridiculing the government's proposed aid package.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced today that all "wet" pubs that have no food would receive a one-time grant of £ 1,000.
He said the payoff is in realizing "how badly they have been hit by this virus in what is usually what is the busiest month."
However, a landlord accused the Prime Minister of using the "token gesture" as a means to appease Tory rebels who criticize the Tier system.
Pubs campaign chairman Paul Crossman, who runs The Swan, The Slip Inn and Volunteer Arms pubs in York, said the meager £ 1,000 grant "offended" pub owners.
He also warned that this would spell the end of many old-fashioned pubs that don't serve food.
"Many customs officers say they are really offended by this amount," he said.
“It may sound like a lot to someone on the street, but the income pubs need to make to stay afloat is £ 1,000 nothing. It's not going to save a pub, to put it that way.
& # 39; The support package on offer still doesn't fully cover the base cost for the vast majority of pubs, let alone to compensate them for the trade denied them during the vitally important holidays.
Mr. Crossman added, “This one-time payment is a symbolic gesture to appease his rebel MPs. This statement today is a pure policy of Boris Johnson.
“It's not enough to make a noticeable difference.
“It just reinforces the impression that the government just has no idea what this is costing pubs in lost trade.
& # 39; The support package isn't enough to cover most pubs this time around. Let alone compensate for lost trades.
“I have three wet-run community pubs here in York. We don't eat anything. We stay closed and fall in the price range where we are entitled to £ 2000 every 28 days which is a joke as our rent is £ 1000 per week.
“It's the real estate costs that scare people. The residues are constantly increasing.
“Some people now owe tens of thousands of pounds. People are not going to clap for £ 1,000. It's a drop in the ocean and actually pretty meaningless. & # 39;
The confusion came after the government said that people who join Tier 2 starting today must have a "full meal" in order to buy a beer.
The law states that a large meal "is likely to be served as breakfast, main lunch or main dinner or as the main course of such a meal".
Some pubs have now launched new menus, one of which offers a "Boris Menu" for £ 1.99 – while Wetherspoon has launched a new range of breakfast muffins.
The landlords accused the government of "not clarifying" the essential eating rule.
An Essex pub has launched a new simplified menu for £ 1.99 so customers can enjoy alcoholic beverages without having to spend a lot of money or have a large meal.
The Kings Head in Gosfield is called "The Boris Menu" and serves plates like a hot dog and chips. baked beans on toast with cheese; and cheeseburgers and fries.
38-year-old pub owner Matthew Arnold told Essex Live, “Every time a new regulation is put in place, pubs spend a lot of time and money.
"It's the frustration that started the menu idea initially at the same time it was serving customers who don't necessarily want a large and expensive meal every time they visit us."
Meanwhile, ahead of tomorrow's reopening, the pub chain Wetherspoon has launched a new breakfast menu that includes a muffin range and brings the price of coffee and tea down to 99p.
Customers can choose from four new breakfast muffins – egg and bacon; Egg and sausage; Breakfast (with bacon and sausage); and egg and cheese.
Other pubs have long rules written on their website to keep customers safe.
The tailors at Cambray Place, Cheltenham have compiled a list of 17 things customers should know before entering the watering hole.
The list includes a recommendation to reserve a table in advance, seating rules, and a warning that customers sitting outside will not receive refunds for unfinished meals and drinks in bad weather.
Other pubs in Tier 2 have announced that they won't open at all, even though they are allowed to.
The Royal Standard near Weymouth remains closed, according to a post on its Facebook page.
It said: “After the announcement, we made the heartbreaking decision to unfortunately remain closed until the next review on Friday, December 16th.
“We had planned to restart our food, but the limitations of the policy forced us to make that decision. On behalf of the entire team here, we thank you for your continued support and hope to see you all again soon.
"Stay safe, gang, and we'll get bigger and better again."
Another pub, also called the Royal Standard, this time in Yeovil, will also remain closed.
A post on his Facebook page said: “After the announcement of the introduction of the new levels.
“With a heavy heart we will not reopen on December 3rd as planned.
"As soon as we return to the first stage, we will open our doors again to all our dear customers!"
In the meantime, the punters have enjoyed the return of the pubs. The intensive care nurses Juan Garcia (27) and Francisco Sanchez (28) had come straight to the pub from a night shift in a nearby hospital.
The couple, who originally came from Spain, put half a liter of orange juice in breakfast muffins.
"We just finished a night shift and came right here for breakfast, which feels good," said Garcia.
Mr. Sanchez added, “It's actually a tradition. It's good to be back
"But I don't get a beer because if I did I would pass out after all the work."
The intensive care nurses Juan Garcia (27) and Francisco Sanchez (28) had come straight to the pub from a night shift in a nearby hospital
General Manager Jon Newton serves a beer to the first customer of the day at Five Degree West in Falmouth, Cornwall
Pub-goers enjoy breakfast at a Wetherspoon pub in London today, following the introduction of the new Tier 2 rules
Pub-goers enjoy breakfast at the Cheltenham-based Bank House pub in Gloucestershire
Mr Garcia said he did not understand why people should be forced to eat with their drink.
"I do not know what you are talking about. If you want more drinks, you can just go from pub to pub, ”he said.
"It's not going to work – like a lot of the things you did."
Damian Brady, 66, enjoyed a drink over asparagus with regulars Steve Baker, 65, and boyfriend Sidney.
Mr Brady ordered a Kronenbourg with his full English breakfast but was disappointed with the government's new rules.
Landlord – contact MailOnline:
What is YOUR pub that serves as an essential meal?
Or do you use a snack to bring in food?
Contact me: email@example.com
He said to MailOnline: 'This breakfast will be the slowest breakfast in history, I will still be here at 4pm. One bean, two beans …
“The government has no idea – the rules are absolutely childish. There is no set pattern at all. & # 39;
Mr Brady tried to order a second beer when the waitress was delivering his breakfast but was informed by his friends that it was against the rules.
"I tried and I failed," he joked. “The rules remind me of a puzzle – it's almost that complicated.
“At the same time, it's great to come into the pub and talk to people.
"Even though I was happy at home – four cans of Stella, £ 5.50 and four cans of Guinness, £ 5 – I was in my element."
At the Oyster Rooms on Fulham Broadway, a stone's throw from Chelsea FC's Stamford Bridge Stadium in south-west London, regulars sipped their first draft after a month.
Sarah Mowatt, 26, nursed a San Miguel after going straight to the pub after hearing they'd reopened.
"Hallelujah, it's a miracle," she told MailOnline.
“It's been a long month – this lockdown felt a lot longer in my opinion. It seems like they just took away everything that was fun while still allowing you to do other things.
When I woke up this morning to find the pubs open I thought why not, I'll just go one, maybe two. I am very happy and feel a lot better today than last month. & # 39;
Ms. Mowatt, who works at events, checked the menu for something to eat.
She was relaxed about the rules, adding, “At first I thought I would have to order six roasts to have a drink.
"But now I know you can order something like a Scottish egg – so it's fine, you have to do what you have to do."
Sean Thomas, a regular in his fifties, was happy to be back at the Oyster Rooms with his friends
Sean Thomas, a regular in his fifties, was happy to be back at the Oyster Rooms with his friends.
“The pub is like a cathedral, we all know each other. So if someone from the community goes missing, you can tell. It protects everyone.
"There are usually seven or eight of us here, all of whom are friends."
His friend, a former RAF soldier who asked not to be named, was concerned about the need to order food.
“I've just had breakfast, now I have to order something to eat. It's not right, the government has no idea. It's a hassle. & # 39;
He said he plans on three pints before going home.
Robert Hopkinson 58, who ordered a John Smiths, said he had cut his alcohol consumption due to lockdown.
"I had about eight cans of stock during the entire lockdown," he said. "I'm glad to be back because you can chat with your friends."
When asked about the rules, he said, “It's not a big problem, but I usually come in and have two or three pints before I leave. But now you have to wait for a meal to be cooked. I will have a big breakfast. & # 39;
"Let's have a cooked breakfast and a beer!": Tier 2 drinkers are happy when the ban ends, while Tier 3 drinkers long for the pub – as the landlords are prepared for a busy day they serve "rich meals".
England's second national lockdown ended overnight and caused a wave of excitement on social media as people prepared to return to the pubs – and landlords prepared for a busy day serving "hearty meals" .
Social media users rejoiced this morning with the end of the month-long shutdown that ended overnight.
The blocking rules will be replaced by a new tiered system from today. The rules stipulate that pubs in Tier 2 areas, including London and much of the Southeast, can reopen.
Hours after the ban was lifted, tier 2 social media users quickly showed their willingness to return to the pubs.
But those in Tier 3, where pubs and restaurants are only open for takeout, had to long for a beer.
A Twitter user, Neil Hughes, said, "I'll make a hot breakfast and a beer."
No, Evans said, “We made it to the end of the lockdown. See use (sic) in the pub for 5 Guinness and a Cesar salad. & # 39;
Another said, "Lockdown is over, you can catch me in the pub with my friends tonight unless you're in tier 2 or 3."
Another Twitter user said, "I'm getting ready to go to the pub tomorrow."
Jo Mac, a Twitter user, said, “And we're not banned anymore! Wohoooo !!! Who would want to come to the pub with me to have a beer and a good meal? «
Another said: & # 39; Woohoo! The blocking has ended. We are free to have a beer in the pub.
“With a Scottish egg, of course. Do we have to sit at a table and eat it with a knife and fork, or can we stand at the bar? & # 39;
Another said, "Lockdown is over, you can catch me in the pub with my friends tonight unless you're in tier 2 or 3."
But while the folks in Tier 2 were excited to go to the pub, the folks in Tier 3 craved a beer.
One said: & # 39; Back to Tier 3, well done everyone! – Now let's get Tier 2 so I can go to the pub! & # 39;
Another said, “Oh great, after four weeks I can go back to non-essential stores. But not to the pub or anything pleasant.
"Tier 1 before the lockdown, Tier 3 today, utter madness."
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