Rumoured 'Plan D' could force pubs and restaurants to close again

A stricter 'Plan D' could see pubs and restaurants forced to close again in an attempt to combat the Omicron variant

Updated on • Written By Lawrence Calman-Grimsdale

Rumoured 'Plan D' could force pubs and restaurants to close again

In the wake of ‘partygate’ and Plan B, rumours of stricter measures being taken have surfaced.

Plan B, which has come into full effect this week, includes measures such as mandatory face coverings in cinemas and theatres, COVID passes for nightclubs and larger venues, and the advice to work from home if possible.

However, due to the highly transmissible Omicron variant, it looks like Plan B might not be enough. Because of this, the Government has allegedly been drawing up a set of more stringent measures in an attempt to curb infection rates in the run-up to Christmas.

It has been reported that according to Whitehall insiders, the government is considering a more drastic Plan C or even Plan D.

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As far as we know, Plan C could include mandatory masks and COVID passes for all restaurants and bars (which has been the norm for some time in countries like Italy).

Plan D, however, would only allow the hospitality industry to serve customers outdoors. This, for many, isn’t feasible and would result in closure.

These measures, if they are implemented, could escalate to a full lockdown if cases continue to climb. Regardless, any forced closure will be another massive hit to the still wounded hospitality industry.

Omicron cases rose by a record-breaking 1,239 in a single day and now stand at 3,137 as of Sunday. One-third of infections in London are now Omicron, and the true number of cases in the UK could be ‘ten times’ reported figures, according to Secretary of State for Education, Nadhim Zahawi.

While it is clear that Omicron is highly transmissible, what is still unclear is whether it is milder than Delta. Either way, the WHO has warned that Omicron is set to ‘outpace’ Delta.

The current advice is to follow Plan B regulations and get your booster jab if you qualify. However, a health department source was reported saying ‘If you follow the science, we should be doing Plan C now. The PM is gambling with the NHS to save his leadership’.

Measures will be debated in Parliament this week, with a vote on Tuesday.

The above article is correct at time of publication, please adhere to any current government guidelines.

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