United Kingdom

Brewers stock up record amounts of beer for when pubs reopen within weeks

Brewers are preparing to restock pubs across Britain with a record 250 million pints of beer, with bosses hoping watering holes could throw up their doors again within weeks. 

Breweries are hoping to produce the staggering amount of drink within the next two weeks, according to reports.

And bosses at the some of the country's biggest breweries have promised to deliver the kegs of beer to pubs from the middle of this month, the Sun today reports.

The June 15 delivery date comes despite the government's roadmap out of coronavirus lockdown stating pubs will not be allowed to open before the beginning of July at the earliest. 

However pub bosses and brewery chiefs are hoping restrictions on pubs, which have been closed since the lockdown began at the end of March, could be lifted earlier than next month.

Brewers are preparing to restock pubs across Britain with a record 250 million pints of beer, with bosses hoping watering holes could throw up their doors again within weeks. Pictured: Customers enjoy a takeaway pint from a bar in Parsons Green, London, this week

Breweries are hoping to produce the staggering amount of drink within the next two weeks, according to reports. Pictured: Tanel Karjus, a master brewer, pours the grain into the mash tun where it is mixed with hot water at Silverstone Brewer

Bosses at the some of the country's biggest breweries have promised to deliver the kegs of beer (like these pictured) to pubs from the middle of this month, the Sun today reports

It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson told MPs last week that the country was showing good progress in terms of the government's lockdown roadmap and suggested the hospitality industry could be back before the current July 4 reopening date.

In preparation, large breweries, such as Heineken, are set to start producing kegs of beer again.

The firm, which has sites in Edinburgh, Manchester and Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, stopped producing kegs following the lockdown - instead focusing on producing bottles and cans.

But they hope to deliver kegs of beer to pubs from June 15 - the same date as Asahi, the firm behind Peroni and Grolsch.

It comes as reports in the Sun suggest the Department for Business has drawn up a 'secret blueprint' to help the nation's pubs reopen again.

And senior government officials are last night said to have told the paper that pubs are likely to reopen in two stages, with outdoor beer gardens likely to be given go-ahead first, before people are allowed back indoors. 

In preparation for the reopening of pubs and bars, large breweries, such as Heineken, are set to start producing kegs of beer again. They switched their attention to bottles and cans following the coronavirus lockdown

Meanwhile, pubs are likely to be told to use an app to get drinkers to order their favourite beverages, in a bid to avoid crowded bars.  

Such a system is planned for Britain's biggest chain, JD Wetherspoon, which hopes to use its app to encourage customers to order online and have their drinks brought to their tables.

It comes as yesterday Guernsey became the first place in the British Isles to re-open its pubs as the coronavirus lockdown slowly begins to wind down.

Licensed premises throughout the Channel Island started serving pints again this week - in a taste of what's to come for the mainland next month.

The lifting of restrictions comes more than two months after all pubs shut in March when the lockdown was announced.

But Guernsey has now entered phase four of its exit plan as it has reported 'no known' Covid-19 cases remaining.

The Golden Lion pub, among others on the island of Guernsey, is now welcoming back punters after pubs re-opened following the slow easing of lockdown restrictions

Inside the pub tables have been set one metre apart, while a one-way system appears to have been created in order to facilitate the ongoing social distancing measures

Despite being allowed to reopen for business, pubs in Guernsey continue to follow social distancing guidelines such as contactless card payments and a limit on the number of people on the premises at any one time

In addition to pubs, hairdressers, gyms, restaurants, cafes, museums and cinemas have also been allowed to welcome customers again.

Initially pubs and bars not serving meals were warned they would need to remain closed even when other businesses reopened, but that continued closure now just applies to nightclubs.

And with venues serving food re-opening on Saturday, all other pubs were allowed to follow suit on Monday.

Some restrictions remain in force with landlords told they must provide table service and record everyone who has been there.

Many pubs say they have not been able to open straight away due to staffing and other matters.

Pubs have thrown open their doors in Guernsey as the island eased its coronavirus lockdown by allowing pubs, hairdressers, gyms, restaurants, cafes, museums and cinemas

Jack Gervaise-Brazier, owner of The Golden Lion, says the pub is doing a 'phased opening'

Tables inside the Golden Lion have been taped off to keep people socially distanced and landlords must provide table service

But among those welcoming back customers is the Golden Lion.

Manager Aaron Thompson, said: 'We've set it up so all our tables are one metre apart, we've set out flooring plans so people can queue easily and we're going to be doing obviously table service.

'We've done all the toilets, so they can all be used safely and within the distance, so we've just done everything we can to make sure it's safe and easy and people can enjoy it.'

Jack Gervaise-Brazier, owner of The Golden Lion, added: 'Not everything is possible, and we're going to be running limited stock. We don't know how many people are going to be coming out.

'I think there's going to be a level of anxiety as well, so with that in mind, we're doing what is feasible.

'We've got outside, inside and upstairs, so we're going to be doing a phased opening, and it's a question of not running before you can walk really.'

One local Paul Schofield said it was a great morale booster for pubs to be back. 

Some businesses on the Channel Island - which is a self-governing British Crown dependency - have been told they may start fully or partially operating again from Saturday

Landlord Stephen Hill stands outside The Red Lion in Guernsey after reopening his doors to customers

Guernsey has become the first place in Britain to allow pubs to reopen and people wasted no time in visiting. Pictured: A customer drinks a pint at The Red Lion

He said: 'It's great the pubs are back. Good for the economy as a whole and you can't beat a nice cold pint in a sunny beer garden.

'We are very lucky in Guernsey to be able to do this, but hopefully everywhere else will be able to follow us soon.'

Guernsey Police said it would be stepping up patrols due to the re-opening of the night time economy.

A spokesperson said: 'An additional restriction is removed and pubs can now serve alcohol without food needing to be purchased at the same time.

'Our shifts are appropriately resourced and high visibility patrols will be taking place as we return to policing associated with an active night time economy.'

Despite this, officers said other than a few calls for noisy parties everyone had been well behaved.

'So far everyone has complied with the rules and guidelines,' said Duty Inspector Kieran McGrath.

'We've had lots of police out on patrols and they report that people have been well behaved.'

The Ship & Crown pub is another that has been allowed to open for business again as Guernsey eases its lockdown restrictions

The Channel Island has entered phase four of its coronavirus lockdown exit plan meaning pubs were allowed to reopen because the island reported no known remaining Covid-19 cases

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