Cork City chairperson of the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) Michael O’Donovan has said it is a huge relief to get a date for the reopening of pubs on Tuesday.
Speaking to The Echo, Mr O’Donovan said it was very welcome news all round with his phone hopping with calls and texts after the announcement at lunchtime on Tuesday.
“We have 13 days to get ready, so that is very doable. Most pubs are prepared any way, they just have to reengage staff and stock up. On September 21, it will be 189 days since pubs closed their doors.”
Mr O’Donovan said publicans have a fairly good idea of the guidelines from the leaked draft, but he said he hoped official protocols would be released very soon to assist publicans in ensuring they were ready to open their doors.
The Cork City VFI chairperson also said that he hoped the public would work with the pubs to ensure a safe and successful return to business.
“I hope they work with us and follow the guidelines, we need to learn to live with this virus. For a lot of publicans, this will be a new experience for them and the public are accustomed to the necessary measures now from going into shops etc. We would appreciate if they follow the guidelines.” Mr O’Donovan said the 1 hour and 45-minute rule is “not ideal” but said they would just have to “get on with it.” The publican said they were hoping for a lot of public support in reopening and the proof would be in the pudding as to whether people returned to the pub or not.
“We will just have to see how things go.”