Safety first as Portsmouth’s cafes, restaurants, bars and pubs re-open

As hospitality businesses in Portsmouth reopen, managers need to make sure they are following coronavirus safety regulations to help control infection levels and keep people safe, reminds Portsmouth City Council.

Under the new Tier 2 restrictions, many businesses, including pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants, can reopen as long as they are following COVID-Secure guidelines to protect customers and staff. There are certain restrictions in place such as:

  • Pubs and bars may not provide alcohol for consumption on the premises, unless with a substantial meal, so they are operating as a restaurant. They may remain open for take-away services.
  • Pubs and bars who are planning to start serving food, or supply food to other establishments, must notify Regulatory Services as it is a significant change in activities and they must make sure they have a diligent system in place.
  • Hospitality venues must stop taking orders after 10pm and must close between 11pm and 5am.
  • Residents must not mix with anyone who is not part of their household or support bubble when indoors.
  • Face coverings should be worn indoors by staff and customers except when seated. A visor may be worn as well as a face covering but not instead of it. Exemptions apply.
  • Socialising outside, including in private gardens or public spaces, is limited to no more than six people. Gazebo’s should have open sides or will be classed as an enclosed space.
  • At least one person should give their contact details to the venue or check in using the official NHS COVID-19 app.

Portsmouth has been placed in Tier 2 because the virus continues to pose a significant risk to local people. The actions taken now will influence how Portsmouth will move through the tiered restrictions. The full list of restrictions can be found here

Cllr Steve Pitt, Portsmouth City Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Economic Development, said: “As hospitality businesses reopen it’s crucial that businesses keep doing their bit to limit the spread of coronavirus so infection rates continue to fall.
We saw good levels of compliance before the lockdown, now we’re asking businesses to keep up the good work so customers can feel confident returning to our restaurants, cafes and pubs in the run up to Christmas. Please stay safe and help Protect Portsmouth.”

The council’s covid business compliance officers will continue to visit up to 40 businesses each day to check the right safety measures are in place, such as social distancing, wearing face coverings and cleaning routines, and to make sure curfews are being observed. In cases of non-compliance, businesses will be told what changes they need to make. If a business refuses to cooperate and/or continues to break the rules and/or if the failure to comply with the rules is deemed sufficiently high, the council has the authority to immediately issue fixed penalty notices, or enforcement notices demanding improvements, or even close premises to limit the spread of coronavirus.

Business advice on safe re-opening, latest Government guidance and grant schemes can be found at where businesses can register for business updates to receive the latest information. Businesses can also call the council’s dedicated coronavirus business support helpline on 023 9284 1641.

Any concerns about a business operating unsafely can be reported at Those without internet access who need information, advice or guidance, can call the council’s coronavirus information line on 02392 688 004.

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