This coming weekend’s pub, bars and restaurants reopening (as well as cinemas, hotels and hairdressers) is being termed Super Saturday after COVID-19 lockdown restrictions have been eased. The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) says that we are expected to spend £210 million in English pubs this weekend, which is around 72% more than the average weekend, and a third of Brits are planning to hit the pubs then. 6.5 million trips to the pubs are expected this weekend, which is around 1.5 million more drinkers than a normal weekend. It is also believed that each person will buy around 2 pints of beer of 2 glasses of wine more than they usually would.
The research also showed that the majority of people across England still remain “cautious” returning back to pubs and bars. This seems to relate to our latest survey lots of you kindly took part in. 65% of those of you who filled in our anonymous survey answered “Yes” to “Are you looking forward to future Who London social events?” The rest of you chose “Not sure” apart from one person who said “No”. These results explain a considerable number of us still remain anxious at the moment about heading to venues. CEBR confirms that just over a third of us will visit pubs in the first week of being permitted to do so again. We are working on new social events for everyone to look forward to, choosing venues carefully, keeping in mind everyone’s safety and enjoyment. When we confirm an event we will ask that you adhere to measures that are in place to ensure that our events continue to be successful.
We can see from our survey that during lockdown the good news is that many of you have found positive the array of online entertainment as well as virtual events, time to focus on the home and enjoy more walking. However, Who Londoners have found it difficult with a lack of social life, not being able to meet people, being isolated, not having enough interaction, not being able to visit venues, not having your usual structure, and understanding that some people are not following the government’s lockdown rules.
As some of our event venues are managing to reopen after having had to shut on 20 March, with the new 1m+ rule there are many which still cannot open under these legislations, perhaps not having the space to keep to 1m+ distancing safely or the funds to modify their layout. We will be keeping an eye on venues’ safety measures for our future events, as well as the COVID-19 “R” rate to ensure that we restart our social events at the appropriate time and at the best venues. We have discovered that pubs are changing the way they run in ways such as asking customers to order through an app on their mobile phone or there being mandatory table service, being given individual sauce sachets rather than our sharing bottles, having hand sanitisers across different areas, staff washing their hands regularly, customers being asked not to speak loudly so as to minimise the spread of droplets, and there may even be some separator screens in indoor seating areas. Visitors will also have to give their details to staff for contact tracing. These are all new measures that are being welcomed.
When we asked Who Londoners “Which Who London social events would you like us to organise in the future when we are permitted to do so?” most of you said our Introductions events where you chat in small groups and then move round to meet others. These events tend to be in pubs/bars so we will be speaking again with our venues, working out the finer details. Walks, Lunches/Dinners, Drinks events, Live Music at Bars/Pubs, visiting Museum/Galleries/Exhibitions, and our Speed-Friending events were the other most popular answer choices to our question. Thank you for taking a few minutes to participate in our research. If you haven’t yet done so and are interested in our future social events for anyone 50+ it would be very helpful if you could also fill out our 3-minute anonymous survey.
We will keep in touch with updates on our newsletter for you. Please feel free to send us a message, or stay up to date with the latest Who London events and special offers by subscribing to our newsletters.
When our in-person events resume we may be requesting that you:
– bring your own sanitiser and tissues;
– frequently wash your hands during events;
– do not come to our events if you are unwell to protect yourself and others.
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