Re-opening of pubs and restaurants

Sir, – Here in Dubai we’ve had the “substantial meal” requirement for a few weeks and this has led to tables full of unwanted food.

Most of us are larger than we were at lockdown, so let’s prevent food waste or further obesity by moving the requirement for a meal to a simple cover charge . . . or at least introduce a “pay it forward” option so those who need a meal can benefit from those who simply want a drink in a pub.

Hospitality has had a rough year and needs help, but the requirement to expand waste or waistlines helps no one! – Yours, etc,



United Arab Emirates.

Sir, – I cannot be the only person questioning the proposed insistence of food consumption with regard to the reopening of pubs. Not only food but a substantial meal costing no less that €9 (Home News, June 17th).

Where is the logic here? Does not the serving of food bring plates, knives, forks, spoons, cups and saucers etc in to equation? All of these products have hard surfaces.

Apart from that, where does food service or the lack of it relate in any way to Covid-19? Does eating a substantial meal now provide some sort of vaccine against this ailment? And 90-minute-only stints in the boozer won’t exactly endear publicans to their clientele either. Pubs either open or they don’t. Give proprietors guidelines they can live with and get on with. Treating the Irish people like children will only serve to get their backs up. In fairness we as a nation have largely played by the rules throughout this crisis. Give us some credit. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 13.

Sir, – There is little doubt but that the relative success of containing the Covid-19 pandemic in Ireland has been down to the responsible and accepting attitude of most people in this country. For this reason, it seems to me that the Government needs to be very careful not to damage this by the introduction of nanny-state measures based on limited or no science.

Talk today of “substantial meals” that are based on costing €9 or more(!), the need to make a reservation before going to a local pub or cafe, and limiting the time there to 90 minutes, are, frankly, a nonsense.

Publicans, restaurateurs, and cafe owners are all included when we refer to how the majority in this country have positively responded to the many demands made on society since March.

There is no reason to believe that they, or we, need to be treated like children. For the record, I have no vested interest whatsoever in the hospitality industry; I trust these owners to act in the best interests of their customers and their businesses.

Let’s continue to trust people. It has brought us a long way so far and straying into nanny-state thinking would undo that relationship very quickly. – Yours, etc,


Co Westmeath.

Sir, – The proposed 90-minutes limit will re-introduce us to the “pub crawl”. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 8.

Sir, – I read that the Government has decreed that pubs may reopen if they are prepared to serve a substantial meal costing no less that €9. Will this become known as the coalition collation? – Yours, etc,


Co Kildare.