Hospitality businesses could be best-placed to help with the roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccine, with BrewDog chief executive among the first to offer his premises.
Chief executive and co-founder of BrewDog James Watt tweeted this morning that he would like to offer his venues to help quickly roll out the Covid-19 vaccine.
Tweeting his suggestion to health secretary Matt Hancock and Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon, he said: "We would like to offer our closed BrewDog venues to help with a quick roll out of the vaccine. For free. We have waiting areas, huge refrigerators, separate rooms for vaccinations and an ace team who can help organise. We want to help."
Yesterday, chief executive of UKHospitality, Kate Nicholls – who received an OBE in the New Year Honours – said "hospitality stands ready to help" with a vaccine roll-out. She put out a call on Twitter saying: "We have large empty hotels in rural and town centre locations which are Covid secure (they housed and fed front line workers and convalescent patients), with trained first aiders and plenty of fridges. We can be vaccination stations."
From today, most of England descended into Tier 4 restrictions, with remaining areas in the south-east and large parts of the Midlands, north-west, north-east and south-west, including Nottingham, Birmingham, Lancashire, Cumbria and Greater Manchester, all entering the highest level of restrictions from one minute past midnight. Areas including Liverpool, Devon, Cornwall and North Yorkshire moved up to Tier 3.
Hancock said he understood that restrictions would place a "significant burden" especially on businesses, however the expansion of restrictions was "absolutely necessary because of the number of cases that we've seen".
The last-minute change has once again impacted hospitality businesses with areas like Devon and Cornwall put into Tier 3 restrictions with as little as nine hours' notice, meaning the cancellation of New Year's Eve bookings.
Nicholls posted on Twitter acknowledging the frustration felt by the industry: "This is cruelly unfair for those who were scheduled to work and receive full pay and customer tips and now left with an uncertain future about when they will work again."