Pubs could be shut until Christmas, hints Michael Gove

Even the sight of a cold pint makes me cry now, thanks

Pubs could be shut until Christmas, Michael Gove has hinted, as he says boozers will be among the last to come out of lockdown.

With the current lockdown expected to be lifted bit by bit, Cabinet Office minister Gove answered a question on whether pubs would open before winter by saying: “Areas of hospitality will be among the last to exit the lockdown — yes, that is true.”

In a further problem, breweries are warning pubs may not even have any beer to serve when lockdown is lifted.

Beer producers have asked for three weeks’ notice to ramp up stocks in anticipation of a big reopening.

Duncan Sambrook, a London brewer, told The Telegraph: “When the pubs do open, the breweries will have to get the supply chain full again, but it’s suddenly dawning on the pubs that if they all open at the same time how they all get beer at once is a big question. There will almost certainly be shortages in pubs when they reopen.”

Meanwhile, pubs are now disposing of their stocks of out-of-date beer.

Pub bosses are understandably anxious. Fred Maguire of Truman’s Brewery said: “Things are looking pretty dire. At this rate it seems unlikely we will be open again before Christmas.”

With no current, concrete plan on how lockdown will be lifted, speculation is flying. One suggestion has even floated the idea of first easing restrictions for young people.

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