Great Britain

British pubs could be replaced by German-style bierkellers as they reopen after lockdown

TRADITIONAL British pubs face being scrapped in favour of German-style bierkellers as they reopen after the  lockdown, industry leaders have said.

Under the plans, bar stools could make way for trestle tables and benches and pint glasses replaced by two-pint steins to cut down contact with bar staff.

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The proposed move from intimate boozer to German beer hall comes as four in ten British pubs face closure owing  to the devastating impact of coronavirus.

Despite all pubs hoping to reopen by the end of the month, drinkers have been warned to expect them to have one-way systems and fewer standing areas.

To comply with social-distancing rules,  bierkellers have been suggested as a possible blueprint for  pubs.

The proposals have been  backed by the British Beer and Pub Association and the Campaign for Real Ale.

Emma McClarkin, BBPA chief executive, said: “We are closely monitoring what other countries are doing with the opening of their bars and if there is anything we can introduce.

“The German style may work for some of our pubs.

"The main thing we are focusing on is social distancing. The two metre distancing is the biggest challenge pubs will face.

"I think our pubs will obviously have more tables to allow more table service and less standing at the bar.

“There’ll be less interaction between customers and between customers and staff.

"This will be hard for pubs with lots of standing area around the bar and lots of bar service.

“All the countries on the continent are going to be waiter service only to maintain social distancing and table service  will be the way forward for some time.

“I think there is going to be a new normal and we have to find what that normal is going to be.”

CAMRA’s national chairman Nik Antona said: “The forced lockdown of  pubs could have a devastating impact on the industry, with estimates that up to 40 per cent will close for good.

“It’s therefore imperative that pubs can open as soon as it is safe to do so and all ideas to bring this about are welcome.”

Pubs with beer gardens are likely to be first to reopen, minister says

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