Popular pub-restaurant group to extend own Eat Out to Help Out scheme to end of October

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Oakman Inns runs 28 pub-restaurants across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire and beyond

Oakman Inns is extending their Eat Out to Help Out scheme to the end of October to cover the school half-term.

Despite the Government’s 10pm curfew for pubs and restaurants, Dermot King, CEO of Oakman Inns which owns 28 pubs across Southern England and the Midlands, says his business and other COVID-secure hospitality operators continue to lead the way in creating a safe socialising environment and will do so for the foreseeable future.

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King revealed his pub group, which employs around 1,000 people, is set to extend their own Eat Out to Help Out scheme – which offers 50 per cent off per person up to a maximum of £10 on food and soft drinks on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays – throughout October, which will include the school half-term.

Oakman Inns' CEO, Dermot KingOakman Inns' CEO, Dermot King
Oakman Inns' CEO, Dermot King

He explained: “The scheme was a success when the Government launched it and our guests have appreciated it too, so it made total sense for us to continue in September.

"By extending the offer into October it allows six ‘pods’ of friends and families to meet up safely outside their homes and give themselves a much-needed treat in these uncertain times.”

The pub chain's CEO believes that Oakman Inns has led the way in changing how they operate during the pandemic by developing Covid-secure measures that provide a safe and secure balance between protecting the health of both customers and staff, as well as diminishing the risk of economic disaster.

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He said: “Back in April, we decided the way forward was to find solutions that allowed us to operate while ensuring our team and guests were safe and protected.

"That is the path we are continuing to take in the light of the PM’s latest announcement.

"To that end, when ‘lockdown’ was announced in March, we invested quickly and heavily in measures that are now commonplace in our sector: seated table service only for maximum of six guests, screens between tables, one-way systems, disposable menus, intensive and regular cleaning and so on.

"As a result, the Government used one of our venues to make their ‘best practice’ film, widely shown as the operational exemplar.

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"This meant that when we were able to reopen on 4th July, we did so with the trust and support of our guests and our retrained teams.”

Since re-opening in July, Oakman Inns has served more than 1.5m customers who they know from their Track and Trace systems have not caught any respiratory disease during their time at an Oakman Inn – nor have any of their staff.

The company is also continuing to innovate and to develop solutions for the coming winter months, which will be announced shortly.

King added: “Our only job is to provide a safe hospitality environment within our communities, to provide great food and service and to deliver safe employment conditions and to develop careers for our some 1,000 people.

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"We believe the hospitality sector can be the standard-bearer for charting the positive, safe and sensible course through the next six months.”



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