Such are the anomalies of continuing restrictions on our movement due to the Coronavirus pandemic that we must wear face coverings in shops and other enclosed spaces, and cannot meet those outside our family group (or “bubble”), but we can go to those pubs which have chosen to reopen. Which means all of the J D Wetherspoon chain.
That caution, it seems, is well merited: one Spoons outlet has been temporarily closed since its grand reopening. The William Rufus, which many folk with time to spare between trains may have willingly frequented in the past, is in central Carlisle on the A6.
But as free sheet Metro told at the weekend, “Coronavirus outbreaks have forced several bars and fast food restaurants to close amid rising infection rates. Wetherspoons and KFC have been the latest chains forced to shut branches and send staff home to self-isolate, as concerns of a second wave begin to gather pace”. There was more.
“On Friday, the William Rufus Wetherspoon pub in Botchergate, Carlisle, closed for a deep clean and 24 staff-members were told to self-isolate after a worker tested positive for Covid-19”. Reassuring, BUT “The pub was able to reopen the following day”. And it gets worse: “The staff member was working in the pub on July 24 and 28. He tested himself on July 21 and his positive result came back on July 30”. Ri-i-i-ight.has told. “Staff at a Wetherspoon's pub are self-isolating for 14 days after a colleague tested positive for coronavirus. A worker at The William Adams in Gorleston, Norfolk, had a test after contact with another person, outside work. who has Covid-19. The venue remains open following a visit from health officials on Sunday”.
Do go on. “Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gershon said only staff that worked in ‘close proximity with the affected employee’ had to self-isolate”. Meaning what, exactly? “The advice Wetherspoon has received from the authorities indicates that those employees working with someone who tests positive should self-isolate if they have been within two metres for 15 minutes or more - for example, working next to someone on the bar or in the kitchen”. Environmental health officers have allowed the Willian Adams to remain open.
Just so you got that, someone who works at the William Rufus in Carlisle tested positive for Covid-19. The test was taken on the 21st. They then went to work at that pub on two succeeding days. And it is now open after what looks like a very temporary closure. The William Adams in Gorleston did not even close. But then, it’s holiday season and there’s plenty of dosh to be made from those worried about venturing abroad.
Those still willing to visit the local Spoons should remember the words of Inspector Harry Callahan: “You’ve got to ask yourself one question. Do I feel lucky”.