Cosy Club will 'roll with the punches' amid Leicester lockdown limbo
Loungers says it has learned to be "patient and resilient" and would "roll with the punches" after it seemed likely its Leicester venue would be forced to remain closed for two weeks after 4 July, due to a localised surge in coronavirus cases.
Alex Reilly, chairman of Loungers, which operates Cosy Club bars around the country, including Leicester city centre, told The Caterer that the Leicester lockdown was "unfortunate" as the venue had been due to open on 8 July with staff lined up to return to work.
He explained: "The only blessing is that it's happened before we've reopened. If it had happened after reopening it would have been a massive inconvenience and would have undoubtedly resulted in loss of stock – as well, of course, of earnings."
Reilly said the business was staggering the reopening of Loungers' estate, so any delay in reopening Leicester would allow the reopening of Cosy Club Guildford to be brought forward by one week.
He added: "As demonstrated by the government's action today, localised lockdowns are a reality and we'll need to ‘roll with the punches' if more follow over the course of the next few weeks or months."
Government officials are due to meet with Leicester's local authority this afternoon with a view to making a formal decision as to whether the city will be forced to maintain current lockdown measures until 18 July.
Leicester's mayor Sir Peter Soulsby told the BBC he was "frustrated" by the indecision about whether an extended lockdown on the city would be enforced, saying "your guess is as good as mine".
Speaking on the BBC's The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday, home secretary Priti Patel said the government had seen "local flare-ups" but would not confirm whether Leicester would go into an extended lockdown.
Patel said that there would "be support going into Leicester" and that it was "right" that the government had a "localised solution in terms of infection control, social distancing, testing" in order to contain the spread of the virus.