Home Local News Dover businesses reopening today, May 17, for third coronavirus lockdown lifting

Dover businesses reopening today, May 17, for third coronavirus lockdown lifting

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Businesses have given details of their full reopenings, in time for the third lifting of coronavirus lockdown today (Monday).

From now hotels, pubs and restaurants can open indoors along with venues such as cinemas and hotels.

Biggin Street in Dover town centre, on the day the present lockdown began, January 5
Biggin Street in Dover town centre, on the day the present lockdown began, January 5

One venue is the Dover restaurant Mr White’s English Chophouse, which is welcoming diners indoors for the first time in four months.

Thusitha Sumanasekera, general manager, said: “The phone has been ringing off the hook while online-based reservations have also been coming in thick and fast.

“A lot of people have missed out on events such as birthdays, anniversaries and engagements so we’re looking forward to making sure guests make up for lost time.

“We’re already at about 80% capacity for the first week of opening and shows the pent-up demand in the area.

“Of course, we’ll still be operating the required social distancing measures, but the feeling is guests now regard this as being the norm.

Mr White’s English Chophouse is opening its doors again completely
Mr White’s English Chophouse is opening its doors again completely

The restaurant, at the Dover Marina Hotel in Waterloo Crescent, is owned by celebrity chef Marco Pierre White.

The Buzz Bingo hall in Biggin Street, Dover, is also reopening today after four months.

It is offering free tea or coffee and a sausage or bacon breakfast roll between 10 and 11am in this and all Buzz Bingo all its clubs on Monday.

Its other two in Kent are in Maidstone and Strood and all re-openings will be marked by ribbon cutting ceremonies

The company says some of its customers are aged more than 100 and its own research shows that four in 10 pensioners haven’t seen or socialised with friends face-to-face in over 10 months.

Buzz Bingo in Dover also re-opens on May 17
Buzz Bingo in Dover also re-opens on May 17

It also found that 73% of over-65s feel much safer now people have had the vaccine and 57% are looking forward to getting back to their normal hobbies.

Since Covid-19 is by no means gone the venues will maintain safety measures such as maximum capacity, Perspex screens and floor markers to enable social distancing.

Peter Brigden, chief retail officer, at Buzz Bingo said: ” As the majority of our customers haven’t been able to properly visit some of our clubs for over a year, we want them to feel completely safe now that it’s possible for them to do so.”

English Heritage will reopen Deal Castle, along with Dover and Walmer castles indoors to visitors from today.

Deal Castle is the only which could not open outdoors in the last few months. Visitors need to pre-book at english-heritage.org.uk

Cineworld at Dover is also back in business this week
Cineworld at Dover is also back in business this week

Cineworld has said it will reopen its cinemas, including at St James’ Retail and Leisure Park, Dover, on Wednesday.

The Booking Hall concert venue in Dover is not immediately opening up but re-starts with a series of films in a pop-up cinema.

They are being shown on their anniversary years.

The first, on June 5. will be Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, which came out in 2001.

The Booking Hall, in Elizabeth Street, had to stay closed over the last year because of the pandemic.

The Booking Hall in Dover
The Booking Hall in Dover

Its first live music show after re-opening is on July 23 with Britpop group Space.

Pubs and restaurants are from today reopening for groups of six people and two households. Cinemas and concert halls can take up to 1,000 people or be half full, whichever is lower.

Outdoor theatres and concert venues can take up to 4,000 people or be half full, whichever is lower.

The last stage of lockdown is expected to take place on June 21.

Family reunions and larger social reunions will finally be allowed and restrictions on larger events could also be eased.

Places such as nightclubs ad big sports venues are also expected to reopen.

These changes depend on the continued success of the vaccination programme and rates of infection sufficiently declining.

Read more: All the latest news from Dover

Deal Dover Sandwich Sam Lennon



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