An investor from the BBC’s Million Pound Menu programme has launched a campaign that celebrates the nation’s love of pubs and pints, promoting a swift and safe return to UK hospitality venues.
Serial bar entrepreneur and Draft House founder Charlie McVeigh is behind ‘Project Pint’, a positive campaign to promote the safe reopening of pubs, bars, clubs and restaurants.
The campaign’s centre piece is a petition asking Government to ‘free the pint’ – to allow all eating and drinking venues to reopen, and to take care of their customers whilst adhering to social distancing.
‘Project Pint’ has three key asks of Government
1. The campaign wants Britain’s pubs, clubs, bars and restaurants back, like they were, as soon as possible, when it’s safe.
2. The campaign wants to allow the 3.2m people who work in pubs, clubs, bars and restaurants to keep their jobs and play their part in rebuilding communities and restoring the economy to health.
3. The campaign wants to let hospitality operators do what they are best at: being responsible for keeping customers and staff safe. They are the experts at running pubs, bars, clubs and restaurants and are required by existing law to protect customers from harm. Let’s let them get on with doing just that.
‘Project Pint’ will launch by inviting pub-goers and pint-lovers to sign a petition calling for the swift and safe return of pubs. Sign the petition here.
Under the banner ‘Let the pint people speak’, ‘Project Pint’ will be giving a voice to everyone who misses their community pub or neighbourhood bar, and will encourage them to tell their stories on the campaign’s social feeds, using the hashtags #ProjectPint and #FreeThePint.
This element of the campaign will seek to remind the public, and Government, that pubs, bars, restaurants and clubs are part of the fabric of British life – a cornerstone that is now imperilled.
Finally, ‘Project Pint’ will aim to combat FOGO, or the ‘Fear of going out’, which pub operators say is one the key threats to the sustainable relaunch of community venues.
Surveys continue to show that a significant proportion of the British population fears that they are at risk by going to public places. ‘Project Pint’ aims to demonstrate by communicating the industry’s plans for reopening that the people who run community venues are best placed to ensure that they are safe in line with their existing legal responsibility.
Campaign founder Charlie McVeigh said: “With the forced closure of our community pubs, bars, restaurants and clubs, we have lost something incalculable from British daily life.
“It is essential that we get them back open absolutely as soon as it is safe, to start to repair the immense social and economic damage caused by Covid-19 and lockdown.
“The longer venues remain closed or subject to restrictive distancing regulations, the less likely it is they will ever be able to re-open and trade sustainably.
“It would be a tragedy if hard-hit communities were to lose their community hubs even while they are only just beginning to emerge from the nine-week lockdown.”
The campaign has the support of breweries and hospitality operators, as well as industry trade body UKHospitality.
For more information, visit www.projectpint.uk and follow the handle @projectpint2020 on Instagram and Twitter.