Pub bosses blast Government for using 'dodgy dossier' to support hospitality curbs

PUB bosses blasted the Government for using a “dodgy dossier” to curb the hospitality trade.

Ministers are partly basing the strict measures for revellers on outbreaks in Japan, China, South Korea and Indonesia, a policy paper shows.

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But industry chiefs say it’s “ridiculous comparing British pubs with South Korean nightclubs, it’s comparing apples and oranges”.

Covid clusters studied in the paper include a super-spreading event in Vietnam linked to a poorly ventilated bar.

And concerns were raised over transmission at a wedding ­dinner in Hong Kong when face masks were not worn.

But Kris Gumbrell, chief executive of Brewhouse and Kitchen, said: “This is a dodgy dossier, a work of fiction the Government wants the industry to swallow.

"I run 22 venues and have 480 staff who won’t forget this.

"We’ve spent good money on making our pubs Covid-secure.”

Emma McClarkin, chief executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “This so- called evidence is incredibly thin. Comparing British pubs with South Korean nightclubs is ridiculous.

"It’s comparing apples and oranges.”

Restrictions on pubs include table service in Tier 1, with alcohol only allowed in Tier 2 with a substantial meal.

In Tier 3 pubs remain closed but a takeaway service can operate.

The row comes as yesterday’s figures revealed 479 more ­people have died from Covid in the UK, bringing the total death toll to 58,030.

There were also 15,871 new infections — but that ­represented a 20 per cent drop from last Saturday.

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