The UK government has reversed its decision to prohibit on-trade venues across England from offering takeaway alcohol under new lockdown rules.

On 31 October, prime minister Boris Johnson announced a second lockdown to mitigate the increase in coronavirus cases across England. MPs are due to vote on the lockdown measures today (4 November), and if approved, the restrictions will come into effect at midnight. The lockdown is due to end on 2 December.

As with the first nationwide lockdown, non-essential businesses such as pubs, bars and restaurants have been told to close. However, one difference in the new lockdown measures was the initial exclusion of alcohol takeaways, a vital revenue stream for closed on-trade businesses. Hospitality businesses are allowed to continue offering food takeaway and delivery services.

The UK government has made a U-turn on this decision, publishing guidelines that state customers must pre-order their drinks online, or by phone or post, which can be collected as long as they do not enter a premises.

The regulations note that a restricted business can only sell alcohol for off-premise consumption through an order made on a website or other online communication, such as telephone or text message, or by post.

Consumers can also collect pre-orders in a vehicle as long as it is passed over without them leaving the vehicle.
Via The Spirits Business
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