10 Aug 2022

Early closing time hits Leitrim pubs and restaurants hard

Early closing time hits Leitrim pubs and restaurants hard

Early closing time hits Leitrim pubs and restaurants hard

Leitrim pubs and restaurants should be facing into their busiest few weeks of the year, but instead they are closing early, shedding staff and for many; contemplating their future.
The new 8pm closing time which is expected to last until January 30 was announced just last Friday. Last weekend was truly the “last hurrah” for many over the Christmas.
The Irish Vintners Association said unless Government reintroduces the CRSS for its members, who now face severe restrictions, many businesses will go to the wall.

“While Government may see 8pm as a compromise the reality is that many pubs don’t open until 5pm so three hours trading is unworkable for them. Even for pubs that open earlier the majority of their trade takes place at night time.

“Given the relentless public health message over the past number of weeks to avoid socialising the public had already cancelled bookings in record numbers. There was no need to further restrict trading hours as our customers are safer in regulated pubs that adhere to guidelines instead of house parties and shebeens.”
The quick turn around on the restrictions means that some restaurants have lost thousands of euros on food stock already ordered for the busy period.
The popular Cottage Restaurant in Jamestown has closed until February.
Chef Sham Hanifa told customers, “Yet again we’ve had to make the painful and heartbreaking decision to close The Cottage tonight until February or whenever the restrictions are lifted. We made this decision as we cannot trade properly and deliver the quality service that we wish to under the current guidelines . We want to thank all our customers for your continuous support.”
Pubs have had to change their opening hours to allow for earlier service, O’Callaghan's Bar in Mohill said, “New rules are a balls but the show goes on still a full line up of music next week. All playing 6 til 8 ... Just means ye have to come in earlier.”
The Dugout in Aughavas said they got a “raw deal” but like many they have decided to “soldier on” and operate from 12-8pm.
Tánaiste Leo Varadkar indicated the number of covid cases of the variant would “break all records” as soon as next week.

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