Saturday 4 July 2020 will see many businesses and venues across Greater Manchester reopen having been closed since lockdown restrictions were introduced in the UK just over three months ago.
It is anticipated that many members of the public will take the opportunity to meet up with friends at pubs and bars but will notice the way these venues are operating will be different.
Social distancing guidelines remain in place, which means that queuing to gain entry and keeping a minimum of one metre apart inside the venues will see businesses introduce new measures to ensure compliance.
There will be an increased police presence in city and town centres across Greater Manchester to ensure the smooth reopening of these venues, with officers taking a pragmatic approach to enforcement. They will continue to engage with members of the public, explain the guidelines and encourage them to be followed before using enforcement as a last resort.
In the run-up and over the course of the weekend police, alongside Local Authorities, will be working closely with the licensing industry across all areas of Greater Manchester. This is to ensure all businesses are aware of the new licensing objectives and COVID guidelines to prevent a second spike of the virus.
Running in parallel to the operation for reopening licensed premises, police will continue to run a dedicated operation to prevent illegal raves from taking place across the region and encourage members of the public to report any relevant intelligence.
Superintendent Chris Hill said: “The reopening of business and venues within the licensing industry is possible thanks to the hard work of everyone who has listened to the guidelines. It’s been a challenging few months for communities and I can understand the temptation of excessive celebrations in response to the new easing of lockdown.
“However, there are still guidelines in place to prevent a second spike and it’s extremely important to continue to social distance and respect others.
“We have a dedicated policing operation running and officers will be taking a pragmatic approach to enforcement. They will continue to engage with members of the public, explain the guidelines and encourage them to be followed before using enforcement as a last resort.
“Enjoy yourself, but do this within the law and respect those around you. If you do go out remember look after yourself by staying within your group and planning how you are getting home.”