Pubs and cafes in Scarborough report 'fantastic' first weekend of opening, despite earlier anxieties

Pubs and other Scarborough businesses have reported a fantastic first weekend out of lockdown.

Sunday, 5th July 2020, 8:03 pm
Updated Sunday, 5th July 2020, 8:08 pm

Despite many feeling anxious about what opening under social distancing measures would bring, landlords and other traders said it was wonderful to welcome people back.

Pauline Hirst, landlady at The Albert in North Marine Road, said: “It’s been fabulous.

“It wasn’t that busy, which was a Godsend as it gave the staff chance to get used to the new way of working.

The Albert Pub opens with Ben Schofield having a pint and Michael Hirst serving.

“I was quite anxious about it. Friday night, I didn’t sleep a wink but once we’d got Saturday out of the way I was looking forward to opening on Sunday.

“The feedback has all been very, very positive. I’m still anxious about what the future holds but we have to give it a try.”

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Photos from 'Super Saturday' in Scarborough

Lee Knaggs, manager at The Scarborough Flyer, said: “I couldn’t have asked for it to go any better.

Scarborough's Clock Cafe staff Jodie Rainton, Jackie Link,Robin Desborough and Sue Bell

“It’s been really, really good and I’ve been so impressed with everybody.”

He said he had been apprehensive about opening but wanted to thank everyone who had been in for acting with respect and being responsible.

“Everybody has accepted the new rules and people have really embraced it and been really good."

He added how proud he is of his team and how they have managed with the new guidelines.

Enjoying a drink at The Courtyard.

Tony Snow, landlord at The Courtyard and Chairman of Scarborough Pub Watch, said: “It was brilliant. From what I’ve heard, everyone had a really good experience with it and the customers seemed to really enjoy it.

“It seemed to be that people were out early, rather than staying out late, but I think people wanted to get out with it being the first day.

“All-in-all, it was a really good experience. It was nowhere near as stressful as I’d anticipated it would be.

“People seemed to get the message that not everywhere would be open and we didn’t need to keep telling people to social distance.

Waiting to go in The Scarborough Flyer.

“They were helping themselves to hand sanitiser and leaving people space to get round them. It seems to be instinct now for people.”

Jackie Link, owner at The Clock Cafe, said: “It’s been really good and we’ve had some positive comments about the markings and how everyone knows where they’re supposed to be.

“We’ve had quite a few people in. I’ve been surprised by how many but they’ve said how they all feel safe because we’re wearing masks.

“I was feeling scared about reopening because you don’t know what you’re up against but it’s been so relaxed. It’s been really good.”

North Yorkshire Police said the first day of reopening for pubs had been busy but without any major trouble.

The force said there were "small pockets" of rowdy and anti-social behaviour but no significant incidents caused by pubs and bars being allowed to serve customers once more.

Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker, said: “My thanks to everyone who enjoyed last night responsibly and to the licensees who have worked hard over the past weeks to prepare for opening.

"It’s inevitable that with alcohol consumption comes anti-social behaviour and we were prepared for an increase in demand. It was busy but no more than a usual Saturday night.”