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Pubs and restaurants may open later in December than expected

By Rory Cashin

November 25, 2020 at 11:28am

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The Level 5 restrictions are expected to lift on the first day of December, but pubs and restaurants may have to wait longer to open.

While the actual date and time for the cabinet to meet about the lifting of Level 5 restrictions is set for 1pm this Friday, November 27, ahead of the end of the restrictions set for Tuesday, December 1, some information is already in discussion.

It has previously been reported that the Government is planning to lift restrictions in three phases throughout December, with Leo Varadkar stating that "it'll be hair cuts and shopping before nights out".

While there had been no set date for the reopening of gastro pubs and restaurants, RTE's political correspondent Mícheál Lehane took to social media today to state that "Strong indications now that Monday December 7th is the most likely date for the re-opening of gastro pubs and restaurants."

This does also mean that it seems unlikely that any pub that doesn't serve food will be unable to open, which has led to an official statement by the Vintner's Federation of Ireland:

"The Vintners’ Federation of Ireland (VFI) says speculation that pubs will be permitted to open only if they have a chef and kitchen is further proof that Government and its NPHET partners will stop at nothing to grind our sector into the ground. Their actions are demonising a trade that is now fighting for it’s very survival."

Padraig Cribben, VFI Chief Executive, says: "It’s difficult to overstate how angry publicans are right now. They feel demonised by the leaks coming from Government, that no matter what regulations and guidelines they implement it won’t be enough for NPHET who clearly have an anti-pub agenda."

READ NEXT: Government discuss a return to restrictions once Christmas is over

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