Soho Summer Street Festival campaign launched

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Soho Summer Street Festival campaign launched London restaurant al fresco Coronavirus

Related tags: London, Al fresco, Restaurant, Coronavirus, Soho

London-based commercial landlord firms Soho Estates and Shaftesbury are leading a campaign to temporarily pedestrianise the Soho area and allow hospitality businesses to set-up al fresco drinking and dining areas.

With the fear that many venues will have to remain closed due to social distancing rules, the Soho Summer Street Festival would see licensing measures across the West End district be relaxed for the duration of the summer, allowing venues to expand operations into the streets.

Soho institutions including Lina Stores, Soho House, The Groucho Club, L’Escargot and G-A-Y Bar are helping to drive the initiative alongside independent restaurants such as 10 Greek Street, Sussex, Tonkotsu, Old Compton Brasserie and Polpo.

The campaign proposes to start by temporarily pedestrianising key streets in the area including Soho Square, Carlisle Street, Bateman Street, Old Compton Street, Greek Street, Frith Street, Dean Street, Moor Street, Beak street, Brewer Street and Romilly Street.

A further request to relax licensing measures from Westminster Council aims to allow businesses to set their tables and chairs outside in order to serve food and drink for the rest of summer. 

"With so many brilliant independent businesses in Soho, we are at risk of losing the culture that makes the area so special," says John James, managing director of Soho Estates.

"Despite the awful effects of the crisis, it has been incredibly warming to see the community come together in such a way." 

Those wishing to support the campaign can do so by adding their signature to the Soho Summer Street Festival petition here​.

Related topics: Business

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