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Government considering extending pub hours in an effort to crack down on Covid house parties

By Sarah Finnan

August 15, 2020 at 11:57am

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According to reports, Government is considering extending pub opening hours in an effort to put a stop to Covid house parties.

It was announced earlier this month that wet pubs would not be allowed to reopen until the end of August at the very earliest. Pushing the initial reopening date of August 10th back to the end of the month, the decision has caused quite a stir amongst publicans who have called on the Government for support during these challenging times. Also imposing an 11pm closing time on all restaurants and pubs that serve food, hospitality workers have said that the decision makes little sense.

Supposedly now reconsidering the ruling, it's believed that Government is exploring the possibility of extending pub opening hours once again. This in an effort to tackle the ongoing problem of Covid house parties.

Hoping to put a stop to people hosting large indoor gatherings at their homes - where public health guidelines are unlikely to be adhered to - Cabinet is reportedly discussing whether extending pub opening hours is the answer.

Speaking to the Independent, a Government source said:

"We don't want people spending hours in restaurants and gastropubs late into the night.

"At the same time, we do not want to displace people from these settings to house parties and after parties. It's not an exact science."

Wanting to encourage people to spend time in establishments where public health regulations are being monitored and enforced, the ruling would most likely only apply to pubs that serve food.

READ NEXT: Ireland’s oldest pub calls for ‘support not sympathy’ on five-month closure anniversary

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