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Pub landlord is ordered to take down £50,000 chalet

A landlord today blasted council officials for banning him from using his £50,000 pub chalet because it breaks Covid rules. 

Jason Kalen, who runs The Marlborough in Wiltshire, was furious at receiving an email a week before the venue’s reopening on Monday to say that using the wooden structure would be against the law. 

The chalet, which has a bar, TV and a pizza oven, has a one-inch gap in the roof to allow fresh air inside but does not meet requirements for at least 50% of the walls to be open to the outside. 

Jason Kalen, who runs The Marlborough in Wiltshire, was furious at receiving an email a week before the venue's reopening on Monday to say that using the new chalet would be against the law.

Jason Kalen, who runs The Marlborough in Wiltshire, was furious at receiving an email a week before the venue's reopening on Monday to say that using the new chalet would be against the law.

Jason Kalen, who runs The Marlborough in Wiltshire, was furious at receiving an email a week before the venue’s reopening on Monday to say that using the new chalet would be against the law.

He said: ‘To receive this email just five days before was heartbreaking. It’s not just going to affect me, nearly almost pub has a marquee in the garden now. 

‘Drinking pubs are over, if you don’t serve food your business doesn’t work. But nobody is going to want to sit outside in this weather.’

Mr Kalen, who began building the structure during the first lockdown last year, said he had been ‘working with the council’ to ensure the building met specifications.   

He said: ‘We made sure that every table is two metres apart, that there is an air flow throughout the entire building thanks to the breathable roof, and we fitted a much bigger entrance. 

‘I ordered all my beer yesterday but now some of that probably can’t be used. I’m currently losing £5,000 a month as it is.’ 

The landlord said he would wait until May 17 – when indoor hospitality is set to be allowed – to use the space.  

‘I’m not going to break any laws, I will follow all protocols, I will just have to delay using it,’ he said. 

Has your pub set-up fallen foul of officials?

Email rory.tingle@mailonline.co.uk

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A council spokesman said: ‘Following confirmation by the government on Monday night that we will definitely be moving to step 2 of the roadmap on 12 April 2021, we emailed over 800 alcohol licensed premises in Wiltshire with guidance on outdoor hospitality.

‘This guidance is not new – it is the same as the guidance issued previously, following the last re-opening just prior to Christmas which was covered by the ‘all tiers’ regulations.

‘It is based on the legal rules for smoking shelters in the smokefree legislation from 2007 which licensees will be very familiar with.

‘This should not come as any surprise to the hospitality industry – we received numerous complaints about outdoor seating areas becoming very enclosed during the last re-opening period prior to Christmas.’

The chalet, which has a bar, TV and a pizza oven, has a one-inch gap in the roof to allow fresh air inside but does not meet requirements for at least 50% of the walls to be open to the outside

The chalet, which has a bar, TV and a pizza oven, has a one-inch gap in the roof to allow fresh air inside but does not meet requirements for at least 50% of the walls to be open to the outside

The chalet, which has a bar, TV and a pizza oven, has a one-inch gap in the roof to allow fresh air inside but does not meet requirements for at least 50% of the walls to be open to the outside

It comes as industry figures warned drinkers to take cash to the pub when they reopen for outdoor drinking  due to ‘control freak’ government rules banning the taking of payments inside.

Landlords fear that patchy rural broadband and mobile signal means that card machines will be difficult to use in pub gardens, creating the prospect of punters not being able to legally pay for pints. 

Meanwhile, some pubs have licensing restrictions that prevent the taking of payments outdoors – leaving them caught in a net of contradicting regulations with no way to open. 

Landlords fear that patchy rural broadband and mobile signal means that card machines will be difficult to use in pub gardens

Landlords fear that patchy rural broadband and mobile signal means that card machines will be difficult to use in pub gardens

Landlords fear that patchy rural broadband and mobile signal means that card machines will be difficult to use in pub gardens

Ministers are looking at changing the rules before Monday so that payments can be taken inside as a ‘last resort’ when card payment ‘isn’t an option’, according to an internal memo seen by the Telegraph

But drinkers are being urged to consider taking cash anyway so they do not need to leave their tables to pay. 

JD Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin said the new rules showed the Government had ‘lost the plot with its control freakery’.

‘Publicans will have to jump through fiery hoops yet again to comply with this daftness,’ he said.

Kate Nicholls, the chief executive of the industry body UKHospitality, said: ‘Be reassured that we will look after you well, and we will process payments.

‘But people need to remember their phone in order to check in for Test and Trace, and they need to remember a mask for walking through into the beer gardens, as well as some cash.’ 

It may be wise to bring cash to pubs, industry bosses have said

It may be wise to bring cash to pubs, industry bosses have said

It may be wise to bring cash to pubs, industry bosses have said 

It came as Boris Johnson vowed not to introduce controversial vaccine passports before May 17, when indoor hospitality can resume. 

Pub bosses have criticised the plans, which they say would cause an unnecessary burden on their staff, while they have been described as ‘un-British’ by civil liberties campaigners. 

The PM told a Downing Street press conference on Monday that the Government was still ‘some way off finalising any plans’ for certification.

The so-called passports are expected to show whether someone had received a vaccine, had a negative coronavirus test or had contracted and recovered from Covid-19 within the past six months.

Mr Johnson said: ‘On Covid status certification, as we prefer to call it, the most important thing to say to everybody listening and watching is there’s absolutely no question of people being asked to produce certification or a Covid status report when they go to the shops or to the pub garden or to their hairdressers or whatever on Monday.

‘And indeed we are not planning that for stage three either, May 17 as you know we are hoping to go for the opening up of indoor hospitality and so on.

‘We are not planning for anything of that kind at that stage.’

However, Mr Johnson did hint that the certification scheme could be used for some pilot events involving large numbers of people over the coming weeks.

‘Obviously we are looking at it (Covid certification),’ he said.

‘We want to be going ahead in the next few weeks with some test events, some pilot events. Big events, getting 20,000 people into Wembley on May 15, that kind of thing.

‘Getting people back into theatre, that will unquestionably involve testing to allow the audience really to participate in the numbers that people want.’

JD Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin said the new rules banning outdoor payment showed the Government had 'lost the plot with its control freakery'

JD Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin said the new rules banning outdoor payment showed the Government had 'lost the plot with its control freakery'

JD Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin said the new rules banning outdoor payment showed the Government had ‘lost the plot with its control freakery’

Mr Johnson’s comments came as the Government published the latest findings from its reviews of Covid status certification – so-called ‘vaccine passports’ – and international travel.

The review suggested a certification scheme could have an ‘important role to play both domestically and internationally, as a temporary measure’ – but Mr Johnson faces opposition from MPs on both sides of the Commons who are concerned about the civil liberties implications.

Asked if the vaccine passports were ‘un-British’, Mr Johnson said: ‘The principle of requiring some people to have a certificate to prove they are not passing on the disease, like surgeons who have to prove they are vaccinated against hep B or whatever, that can be a sensible one.

‘But I want to stress that we are some way off finalising any plans for Covid certification in the UK.’    

MailOnline has contacted Wiltshire Council for comment.  

Fare deal! Uber offers half-price rides to 150 pubs reopening from April 12 to help get England’s boozers back on their feet. Is YOUR local on the list?

By Tom Pyman for MailOnline

Uber is offering half-price rides to pubs across the country in a bid to get locked-down Brits back out drinking when venues finally reopen next week.

The ride-sharing app has launched a campaign to help get England’s boozers back on their feet, with the wider hospitality sector decimated by restrictions in recent months.

Many will already be chomping at the bit to return to the pub, but as an added incentive, Uber is offering a 50 per cent discount, up to £6, to the first 30,000 riders between April 12 and May 16.

It comes as industry figures warned today that drinkers should take cash to the pub due to ‘control freak’ government rules banning the taking of payments inside.

Landlords fear that patchy rural broadband and mobile signal means that card machines will be difficult to use in pub gardens, creating the prospect of punters not being able to legally pay for pints.  

The Sill and West in Portsmouth is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Sill and West in Portsmouth is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Sill and West in Portsmouth is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week 

The Crooked Billet in London is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Crooked Billet in London is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Crooked Billet in London is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Hare and Hounds in Bath is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Hare and Hounds in Bath is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Hare and Hounds in Bath is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

 

Meanwhile, some pubs are so desperate to serve locals from Monday that they are opening up at one minute past midnight.

The Kentish Belle, a micropub in Bexley, South East London, has been taking bookings for tables between 0.01am and 3am on April 12 after obtaining a licence to operate as a one-off in the early hours of the morning.  

Other pubs have also been busy getting tents and marquees ready for the big reopening, while the chain Marston’s this week reaffirmed plans to open around 700 beer gardens and other outdoor spaces over the coming days as restrictions ease.

The plea for punters to bring cash is also due to some pubs having licensing restrictions that prevent the taking of payments outdoors – leaving them caught in a net of contradicting regulations with no way to open. 

Ministers are looking at changing the rules before Monday so that payments can be taken inside as a ‘last resort’ when card payment ‘isn’t an option’, according to an internal memo seen by the Telegraph

But drinkers are being urged to consider taking cash anyway so they do not need to leave their tables to pay. 

The reopening comes after it emerged this week that pubs and restaurants could face having to decide whether to operate profitably by scrapping social-distancing in exchange for having to police Covid-19 vaccine passports themselves.

The Government has said the passport schemes could be introduced in hospitality settings in return for ‘reduced social distancing requirements’ – but industry leaders say this will leave them with a ‘Hobson’s choice’. 

Plans for vaccine passports – which were once rejected by the Government as ‘discriminatory’ – have sparked a huge cross-party backlash, with 72 MPs signing a pledge to oppose them, including more than 40 Conservatives.

The Prime Minister has insisted pubs and restaurants will not need to introduce the schemes when they reopen outdoors next Monday or when they first permit customers indoors, probably on May 17.

But a review suggests they could ‘play a role in reducing social distancing requirements’ later in the summer, with a document confirming the NHS is already working on both digital and paper systems for the scheme.

Water Witch in Lancaster is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

Water Witch in Lancaster is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

Water Witch in Lancaster is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Judges Lodging in York is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Judges Lodging in York is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Judges Lodging in York is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Rose and Crown in Oxford is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Rose and Crown in Oxford is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Rose and Crown in Oxford is one the 150 pubs to benefit from the Uber offer when it reopens its pub garden next week

The Kentish Belle in Bexley, South East London

The Kentish Belle in Bexley, South East London

The Kentish Belle in Bexley, South East London

The Kentish Belle in Bexley, South East London

The Kentish Belle in Bexley, South East London, has been taking bookings for tables between 0.01am and 3am next Monday

A graphic shows how the vaccine passport could work when rolled out across the country

A graphic shows how the vaccine passport could work when rolled out across the country

 A graphic shows how the vaccine passport could work when rolled out across the country

Uber has partnered with The Good Pub Guide to compile a list of the top 150 venues across the country which have outdoor spaces and can be chosen as destinations using the offer. 

These include Highbury Vaults in Bristol, The Perch in Oxford and Black Lion in Brighton, but the offer can be used when travelling to any pub in the country.

Brad Francis, manager of Highbury Vaults, told MailOnline: ‘It’s great to hear of this offer to help out the industry, but unless customers have reserved a table I’m afraid they’ll be disappointed as we’re fully booked for all of the first week.

‘Ever since it was announced that we could open on April 12, it’s just gone mental, and the support from people has been fantastic.

‘The last few months have been completely soul destroying, so we can’t wait to welcome everyone back on Monday.’

To take advantage of the offer, users should enter the promo code THEPUBAWAITS in their app before booking a trip.

It comes as a nationwide poll revealed that 13 million adults will be visiting the pub next week, with half citing supporting the struggling sector as the reason for their visit.

Half (48%) of people said they felt safe returning to the pub, with 74% happy to sit outdoors to help stop the spread of Covid. 

Meanwhile, more than half (52%) said pubs reopening makes them feel as though they are returning to normal life.

Jamie Heywood, Regional General Manager for Northern and Eastern Europe, Uber, said: ‘As the country slowly starts to unlock and outdoor hospitality reopens, we want to play our role and support the pubs, restaurants and cafes across England that have been shut for many months. 

‘That is why we are offering users 50% discounted trips to those who are looking to venture out and return to their favourite local, as we all look towards brighter times ahead.’

Uber’s list of 150 pubs with outdoor space reopening from Monday 

Hare & Hounds, Bath

Bath Brew House, Bath

Royal Oak, Bath

Physician, Birmingham

Old Moseley Arms, Birmingham

Plough, Birmingham

Purecraft Bar & Kitchen, Birmingham

Wellington, Birmingham

Physician, Birmingham

The Railway Bell, Brighton

Black Lion, Brighton

Caxton Arms, Brighton

Cricketers, Brighton

Daddy LongLegs, Brighton

Highbury Vaults, Bristol

Alma, Bristol

Gloucester Old Spot, Bristol

Grain Barge, Bristol

Inn on the Green, Bristol

Kensington Arms, Bristol

Old Harkers Arms, Chester

Bear & Billet, Chester

Boathouse, Chester

Coach House, Chester

Oakfield, Chester

Pied Bull, Chester

Alexandra, Derby

Brunswick, Derby

Grove, Huddersfield

Rat & Ratchet, Huddersfield

Borough, Lancaster

The Sun, Lancaster

Water Witch, Lancaster

Beck and Call, Leeds

Grove, Leeds

Kirkstall Bridge, Leeds

Whitelocks, Leeds

Britannia, Leicester

Forge, Leicester

Globe, Leicester

Dog & Bone, Lincoln

Jolly Brewer, Lincoln

Red Lion, Lincoln

Dead Crafty Beer, Liverpool

Baltic Fleet, Liverpool

Thomas Rigbys, Liverpool

Alexandra, London

Alfred Tennyson, London

Anglesea Arms, London

Atlas, London

Beau Brummell, London

Bell & Crown, London

Black Friar, London

Blue Anchor, London

The Abbeville, London

Camden Head, London

Carpenters Arms, London

Case is Altered, London

Cask Pub & Kitchen, London

Coach & Horses Barnes, London

Coach Makers Arms, London

Crooked Billet, London

Crooked Well, London

Crown, London

The City Barge, London

Dovetail, London

George, London

Goldsmiths Arms, London

Grazing Goat, London

Guildford Arms, London

Hare & Hounds, London

Ivy House, London

Jerusalem Tavern, London

Jolly Gardeners, London

Kings Head, London

Lamb Tavern, London

Latchmere, London

Lighterman, London

London Apprentice, London

Lord Northbrook, London

Market Porter, London

Mayflower, London

Morpeth Arms, London

Mr Fogg’s Tavern, London

Mute Swan, London

Nightingale, London

Oak, London

Old Nun’s Head, London

Old Orchard, London

Olde Mitre, London

Orange, London

Park Tavern, London

Pear Tree, London

Pilot, London

Porterhouse, London

Princess Victoria, London

Railway Tavern, London

Red Lion, London

The Roebuck, London

Rose and Crown, London

Thomas Cubitt, London

The Ship, London

Spaniards Inn, London

Tapping The Admiral, London

Thatched House, London

Two Doves, London

The Union Tavern, London

Victoria, London

Windsor Castle, London

The White Cross, London

The White Horse, London

Jolly Coopers, London

The Woodman, London

Wharf, Manchester

Dukes, Manchester

Font, Manchester

Mr Thomas’s Chop House, Manchester

New Oxford, Manchester

Oast House, Manchester

Old Wellington, Manchester

The Bluebell, Newcastle

Dick Turpin, Newcastle

The Falcons Nest, Newcastle

Fat Cat, Norwich

Old Green Dragon, Nottingham

Radcliffe, Nottingham

The Bear in Oxford

Perch, Oxford

Punter, Oxford

Rose & Crown, Oxford

Chequers, Oxford

Head of the River, Oxford

Isis Farmhouse, Oxford

Charters, Peterborough

Old Customs House, Portsmouth

Bridge Tavern, Portsmouth

Still & West, Portsmouth

Ranmoor Inn, Sheffield

Rising Sun, Sheffield

Sheffield Tap, Sheffield

Glebe, Stoke

Bulls Head, Stoke

Harrys Bar, Wakefield

Great Western, Wolverhampton

Hail to the Ale, Wolverhampton

Butchers Arms, Worcester

Chequers, Worcester

Nags Head, Worcester

Plough & Harrow, Worcester

Judges Lodging, York

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