Super Saturday a ‘disaster’ for hospitality industry, but police hail largely quiet night

Home UK Super Saturday a ‘disaster’ for hospitality industry, but police hail largely quiet night
Super Saturday a ‘disaster’ for hospitality industry, but police hail largely quiet night

The day the most significant relaxation of England's lockdown measures came into force has been described as a "disaster" for the hospitality industry, despite police welcoming a largely quiet night.

While most of the country saw a relatively uneventful evening on what was widely dubbed "Super Saturday", a small number of pubs closed early due to disorder and some arrests were made.

Images from Soho in central London also showed people packed into streets outside bars, with some apparently failing to adhere to social distancing guidelines.

Image: Crowds of people in Soho on so-called 'Super Saturday'
A man is seen being carried on his friend's shoulders in Soho
Image: A man is seen being carried on his friend's shoulders in Soho

The head of the Metropolitan Police joined other senior officers in praising most people for complying with restrictions and said there had been "no significant incidents in the capital".

But Jeremy Joseph, owner of London's long-running G-A-Y nightclub, criticised the government's decision to reopen pubs on a Saturday and the minority of revellers who flouted rules designed to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

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He told Sky News: "Last night was a complete disaster but if you're going to have a slogan like 'Super Saturday', what do you expect?

"If people intend to do again what they did last night then it's over for the hospitality industry. We are finished.

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"You have to blame everybody. It starts with the government. You cannot have something called 'Super Saturday'.

"We should not have reopened on a Saturday night. It should have been on a Monday.

People out in Borough Market, London, as coronavirus lockdown restrictions are eased
Image: People out in Borough Market, London, as coronavirus lockdown restrictions are eased

"It should have been a slow build. I 100% blame the government but people have to take individual responsibility.

"There are two pictures from last night: inside the bars everybody was observing social distancing; outside they were not."

Government officials and ministers are not believed to have publicly referred to the day as "Super Saturday".

It came after the Met's commander, Bas Javid, issued a generally positive appraisal of the night's events.

People enjoy a drink with yellow tape on the seats aiding social distancing inside the Burnley Miners Working Men's Social Club
Image: People enjoy a drink with yellow tape on the seats aiding social distancing inside the Burnley Miners Working Men's Social Club

"Yesterday saw lockdown restrictions lifted further and many Londoners attended pubs and bars last night to enjoy themselves," he said.

"The majority of the public complied with social distancing guidelines and remained vigilant. While some areas were notably busy such as Soho and Portobello Road, we are pleased there were no significant issues or incidents in the capital.

"A small number of premises decided to close early following advice from officers due to crowding and social distancing issues and we thank them for their responsible actions.

"It's vital that we don't lose track of how far we have come and all act responsibly and play our part to minimise the spread of coronavirus."

In the West Midlands, police said they received a "high level" of 999 calls during the early hours of Sunday morning, reportinRead More – Source

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