Dear Friends of Shepherd Neame,
I would like to thank you for your incredible support during the past few weeks since we were able to open our doors with the return of indoor hospitality. Our licensees and team members have been overwhelmed by the positive response and feedback since the restart.
We had hoped that this would be followed by the full lifting of restrictions next Monday (June 21). But the Government has announced that there will now be a four week delay to allow more people to be vaccinated amid rising case numbers.
This decision is disappointing, but perhaps not surprising. We are lucky that the majority of our pubs can continue to trade with the current restrictions, particularly those with great gardens while the weather is good. But 15 of our pubs in Central London will remain shut at this time.
It is, however, a terrific blow for many other closed businesses in the hospitality sector, particularly those in the events and nightclub industries, including many outlets in city centres, who have not been able to open for more than 16 months and now face further heavy losses. We sympathise with them, and urge the Government to ensure that that more financial support is provided.
We sincerely hope that this is the final delay to the reopening roadmap, and that the destination remains a full and irrevocable removal of all restrictions.
I remain hopeful that it will not be too much longer before we can finally celebrate Freedom Day.
As ever, I would like to pay tribute to the spirit and the resilience shown by our team members and our licensees, who continue to work tirelessly in challenging circumstances.
With my thanks and very best wishes,
Shepherd Neame Chief Executive