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The Speaker has announced that the sale of alcohol is to be banned in all House of Commons bars and restaurants despite London’s coronavirus restrictions still allowing licensed premises to operate freely.
Sir Lindsay Hoyle said the prohibition would come into effect on Saturday and would apply if “food is served or not”.
The move comes after the health secretary, Matt Hancock, announced that the capital would be placed in tier 2 status, under which indoor mixing between households is banned. Bars and restaurants, however, are allowed to remain open.
At present, only the Liverpool city region is under the most stringent tier 3 measures, which prevent pubs from opening unless they serve food. Alcohol can be bought on hospitality premises in tier 3 areas only if it is accompanied by a “substantial meal”, according to government guidance.
Hoyle said: “Following the government’s decision to move London into the tier 2 Covid alert category, I have asked the parliamentary authorities to introduce measures to bring the House of Commons into line with the national picture.
“As MPs represent different constituencies in different tiers – with the very highest level ordering the closure of pubs – I have decided to stop the sale of alcohol across the House of Commons end of the estate from this Saturday.
“This means it will not be possible to buy an alcoholic drink from any of our catering outlets for the foreseeable future, whether food is served or not.
“The House of Commons commission will be meeting on Monday to consider other measures needed to protect MPs, their staff and house staff, while maintaining our Covid-secure status.”
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Sale of alcohol to be banned in House of Commons | Coronavirus