Wellingborough landlord looking forward to being back with customers
Publican John Eames has missed being behind the bar of the Coach and Horses
The landlord of an award-winning Wellingborough pub is looking forward to being back behind the bar of his beloved hostelry as lockdown restrictions are eased next week.
John Eames will reopen the Coach and Horses in Oxford Street to punters on Monday, April 12, at 4pm, welcoming them back to the outside seating area and spacious beer garden.
But it will not be a case of popping down the pub for a pint - unless you book a table - and clients will have to use socially-distanced seating with drinks ordered by an app.
Mr Eames said: "I'm a stickler for the rules. We need to keep everyone safe so it will be bookings only, drinks ordered through our app providing table service, a maximum of six at each table and a one way system."
Once booked in customers will use hand sanitiser, sign in to the track and trace app before entering the pub wearing a face mask. They will then be shown their allocated table where they will be able to sit without a face mask, however, anyone making their way to the toilets will have to wear a face covering. Drinks can only be paid for with a card and not cash.
Mr Eames said: "We're only doing bookings to keep it under control. We have a sheltered area which has been approved. We are not doing slots so people can stay as long as they are well behaved. We are at the mercy of the weather so if people booked in the beer garden want to come under the shelter it will only be allowed if those tables haven't been booked. We can't take responsibility for the weather.
"It's going to be trial and error for a few weeks. I'm really looking forward to being back. As a landlord you are used to long hours. I've missed the bar banter - it's a way of life. I'm not used to the solitude.
"I've got fantastic customers from Wellingborough and further afield and I'm looking forward to welcoming them back."
The Coach and Horses' food menu will return in May and real ale and cider specialist Mr Eames is sure that the pub-goers will be in a Covid secure space.
With a maximum of six per table the nominal capacity of the pub could seat 145 people.
He said: "Publicans should be proud of what they have done. I'm all for safety. Pubs are safer than supermarkets in my opinion. I don't know how they get away with what they are doing."
Customers will be able to book tables via Facebook messenger by clicking here.
The pub will open from 4pm to 10pm Monday to Wednesday and 12 noon to 11pm, Thurday to Saturday with Sunday, 12 noon to 6pm.
The Coach And Horses in Wellingborough is an award winning traditional pub in the heart of the town. Serving a constantly changing range of fantastic cask ales and ciders & craft beer