Cut 2-metre rule to save ‘thousands’ of jobs, say restaurants


Relaxing the two-metre social distancing rule in restaurants and pubs could save ‘thousands’ of jobs, says the boss of the firm behind Wagamama and Frankie & Benny’s.

Andy Hornby, chief executive of The Restaurant Group, is among a group of industry leaders lobbying for social distancing to be cut to one metre as the coronavirus lockdown is lifted.

The group ramped up pressure on the Government on Friday in a video conference call with Business Secretary Alok Sharma. They are believed to have urged him to follow World Health Organisation guidelines for one-metre distancing, which is in use across Europe.

Andy Hornby, chief executive of The Restaurant Group which owns Wagamama, wants social distancing to be cut to one metre

Hornby, who is looking at a range of safety measures across his restaurants, said: ‘If the social distancing guideline was set at one metre, in line with the WHO guidelines, then the industry should be able to operate at 70 per cent capacity and thousands of jobs will be saved.’

Fuller’s chief executive Simon Emeny today reveals that only half of the group’s 393 pubs would be able to reopen under two-metre guidelines


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