Preparations are under way for the limited re-opening of Swansea cafes, restaurants and bars across Wales today.
A relaxation of Welsh Government restrictions means that such attractions right around the area can welcome and serve customers outside on land that’s part of the business.
Customers are being urged to be responsible in the city centre and elsewhere and to:
- plan ahead, including travel
- book tables in advance if this is offered
- maintain the two-metre physical distancing rule
- respect others
- not gather in groups
- drink responsibly
Swansea Council, Swansea BID, South Wales Police, businesses and others have been working together to plan for the phased re-opening of the hospitality sector in line with last weeks Welsh Government announcement.
A small number of the area’s hospitality businesses are expected to open today, with more following in subsequent weeks. This will happen across the area.
Those planning to reopen soon have been making arrangements for queuing systems outside their doors to ensure social distancing is maintained. Signs have gone up around the city centre to remind people of the two-metre rule.
City centre rangers and other council officers will be out and about on the city centre streets next week to offer guidance to those visiting hospitality businesses.
They want to ensure everything goes smoothly and that people stay safe as was the case when many city centre reopened two weeks ago.
Council leader Rob Stewart said:
“We want people to feel safe and welcome when they return to our hardworking hospitality sector right across the area.
“I thank those who have started visiting retail businesses in a considerate manner – I hope the same responsible approach will prevail from Monday when the outdoor areas of our cafes, restaurants and bars reopen.
“It’s crucial to continue social distancing and to respect all others including those keeping you safe and serving you.”
Further information including FAQs on using the city centre www.swanseacitycentre.com/covid-19-updates
Cllr Stewart said:
“The phased return of Swansea’s excellent hospitality sector is an important time for us all on the way back to enjoying some degree of normality in our lives.
“It's going to be challenging because we will all need to get used to doing things differently. We love our city and we want its businesses to thrive and our residents to stay safe.
“To help achieve that we’re working together and to government guidelines – and we’re learning from other areas where hospitality has already reopened.
“Our campaign Enjoy Swansea. Responsibly. is asking everyone to be responsible by observing the two metre rule when out and about, staying home if unwell and washing or sanitising hands as frequently as possible. This way we will all be doing what we can to make sure that we keep each other safe.”
South Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Alun Michael said:
“As pubs and clubs reopen throughout the Swansea area, our message of Drink Less, Enjoy More is as relevant today as it has ever been but the consequences of getting drunk and being irresponsible are even more serious now.
“We must all play our part by following the rules especially on distancing and respecting each other, respecting bar and restaurant staff, respecting the emergency services who will be working to keep you safe and respecting our local environment.”
Russell Greenslade, Chief Executive of Swansea BID (Business Improvement District), said:
“BID area businesses have been working hard behind the scenes to prepare for the careful re-opening of the city centre. We have been supporting them, with PPE packs, safety advice and guidance.
“We know they are keen to get back to doing what they do best, and consumers want to return to normality. This is a crucial chapter and it is important that we all play our part to ensure things run smoothly.”
Bruno Nunes, CEO of the Creative Hospitality Group, including Peppermint, BrewDog, Bambu and BrewStone, said:
“Sadly we are not in a position to re-open just our outdoor space on July 13.
“The reason does not revolve around our ability to keep our community – of staff, customers and suppliers – safe but instead, our beautifully inconsistent Welsh weather, the huge challenges of running a business that freshly prepares its food and drink and only being able to operate at a very limited capacity outdoors.
“We look forward to fully reopening in the next few weeks.”
To find out more about the re-opening of the city centre, including a Shopping Guide and FAQs, go here www.swanseacitycentre.com/covid-19-updates