4th July 2020:
Dear Friends of Shepherd Neame,
After 15 long weeks of closure, I am absolutely delighted that today we can welcome you back to our pubs!
We will be opening our managed pubs on a phased basis and, together with our tenanted estate, we expect to open at least two thirds of our pubs by the end of July. It is likely that a few may not open for some time, for example those in some city centres. Please do check our website and social media channels regularly for the latest information.
Although a few things may be a little different, we can assure you that everything you missed most about your local will be on offer – good drinks, good food, good company and a great welcome.
Lockdown has been an extraordinary experience for all of us, and we recognise that while many of our customers are excited at the prospect of returning to the pub, others may feel apprehensive. We are doing our very best to provide reassurance that our environments are Covid-secure, and our teams have been working flat out to install screens and other mitigating measures and introduce new ways of operating. The health and welfare of team members and customers remains our top priority.
As we reopen, we now ask for your support in taking personal responsibility to follow the new rules, to demonstrate patience towards our staff, tolerance towards fellow customers and respect for our neighbours. We need you to stay safe, in order to stay open.
Shepherd Neame is privileged to own some of the most characterful, historic pubs in the country. During this crisis our licensees have demonstrated, more than ever before, the important role they have to play at the heart of their communities. Today is only their first step on a long journey back to recovery, and they do not expect business to return to previous levels straight away.
As we begin to exit lockdown, please remember that supporting your licensee, staying local and buying local is the best way to preserve this unique heritage for future generations; that every pint, every meal, every overnight stay, every cup of coffee purchased will not only help to secure the future of your pub, but will protect jobs.
I would like to thank you for your loyalty and many messages of support, and hope to see you at one of our pubs very soon.
With my very best wishes,
Shepherd Neame Chief Executive