Wetherspoon plans to reopen sites "in or around" June

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Wetherspoon plans to reopen sites "in or around" June after Coronavirus shutdown

Related tags: Wetherspoon

JD Wetherspoon has announced that it is currently planning to reopen its venues "in or around" June.

The pub giant says it believes the average size of its sites is likely to assist if social distancing measures apply, adding that it is also likely to make some changes to its operating model.

However, with pubs in the UK currently banned by law from reopening under measures imposed by the Government to tackle the Coronavirus crisis, it is not yet known how the chain plans to reopen in June. 

The announcement was made by JD Wetherspoon last night (29 April), alongside news that it had raised £141m in funds through the placing of 15,668,430 new ordinary shares; money that it says will be used to secure the business through the Coronavirus crisis.

Wetherspoon’s chairman Tim Martin and CEO John Hutson have both taken a 50% pay cut, and the business currently has 43,000 staff on furlough. 

It is reportedly also looking to access the Bank of England’s Covid Corporate Financiing Facility (CCFF), although it does not believe it is eligible as it is not ‘investment grade’.

"The Coronavirus outbreak is having a severe impact on the UK pub sector," says Martin.

"In these challenging times I would like to thank everyone at the company, its suppliers, landlords, banks and the government for their support and commitment. 

“We've had to take significant action to reduce costs, decisions which have not been taken lightly.

“We look forward to re‐opening our pubs and hotels and welcoming back our teams in the near future.”

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