Why is there in practice no distancing in most shops/cafes?

AdamWW

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Apart from "wear a mask in shops", I doubt anyone is checking/obeying any guidelines unless they've been promoted with a pretty picture by Facebook Karen. I have no idea what a bubble is and don't care. I keep my distance from elderly relatives and that's it.
I can assure you that there are people who are doing their best to follow the guidelines. They may not be in the majority. I don't know.
 
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Baxenden Bank

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Apart from "wear a mask in shops", I doubt anyone is checking/obeying any guidelines unless they've been promoted with a pretty picture by Facebook Karen. I have no idea what a bubble is and don't care. I keep my distance from elderly relatives and that's it.
Come on, keep up :):

Control Lives / Save The Virus

Given that the law / regulations / rules / guidance / random off-the-cuff soundbites seem to change constantly, and often after the event, you cannot prevent yourself from inadvertently breaking one of them at some point. The answer to which is simpy don't bother. Carry on doing what feels right. No-one is enforcing any of it anyway.
 

talldave

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I can assure you that there are people who are doing their best to follow the guidelines. They may not be in the majority. I don't know.
You can assure me all you like, I don't care. As soon as we achieved the objective of lockdown those in charge appear to have lost the plot and have no objective or clear message.

They lost my attention early on and can stuff their "guidelines" where the sun doesn't shine. Cummings was the breaking point for many people I'm sure, as it confirmed the contempt the idiots in charge have for those of us who pay their wages.
 

Djgr

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You'd have thought pubs would provide for this sort of scenario by setting out tables for multiple households, e.g. a table for 8 with 2 chairs removed so the two households can sit at opposite ends and distance properly. It's part of my disappointment that nobody seems to be considering these simple and obvious answers to reducing spread.
I suspect one month's evidence since easing lockdown suggests that people eating meals in pubs is a trivial cause of infection spread
 

Djgr

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What evidence?
The fact that infection spread appears to be limited to certain regions of the country, dubious working practices, poor living conditions and midnight raves, rather than between people having a Ploughman's Lunch in North Devon
 

Bletchleyite

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The fact that infection spread appears to be limited to certain regions of the country, dubious working practices, poor living conditions and midnight raves, rather than between people having a Ploughman's Lunch in North Devon
That is not the case if you take a look at the figures on the Government site. Those areas are having larger spikes, but everywhere is seeing a slow increase.
 

AdamWW

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I think you could enforce pubs and restaurants offering such facilities. I think it would be much harder (logistically and politically) to force people to actually use them.

But it does seem rather odd that there doesn't seem to be any way in general to actually keep to the guidelines, other than by not going for a meal/drinks with anyone outside your household.
I walked past a pub today that has re-arranged their "beer garden" to have a few single tables well spaced out, and a little cluster of tables which looks like exactly what you'd need to eat/drink with people you want to keep away from (if you see what I mean).
 

Bletchleyite

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I walked past a pub today that has re-arranged their "beer garden" to have a few single tables well spaced out, and a little cluster of tables which looks like exactly what you'd need to eat/drink with people you want to keep away from (if you see what I mean).
Sounds like what everyone should be doing.
 

northernchris

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I went in to one of the chain coffee shops yesterday for the first time since the spring, and as I was sitting in was immediately asked to complete the contact details form. I was allocated a table, which was 2m apart from the others and it was all quite normal, apart from having to walk past just about every other table to order due to the one way system in place. I'd like to think most businesses are acting in good nature to follow the guidance although one of the pubs near to me clearly isn't going by how many people are sat on each bench and the fact they have loud music causing everyone to shout to hear each other
 

Ianno87

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I went in to one of the chain coffee shops yesterday for the first time since the spring, and as I was sitting in was immediately asked to complete the contact details form. I was allocated a table, which was 2m apart from the others and it was all quite normal, apart from having to walk past just about every other table to order due to the one way system in place. I'd like to think most businesses are acting in good nature to follow the guidance although one of the pubs near to me clearly isn't going by how many people are sat on each bench and the fact they have loud music causing everyone to shout to hear each other
I got greeted in Costa the other day in the restaurant style of "Please wait here to be seated", precisely to ensure details were collectee from those wishing to sit on (I was taking out, so got waved on)
 

A Challenge

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I got greeted in Costa the other day in the restaurant style of "Please wait here to be seated", precisely to ensure details were collectee from those wishing to sit on (I was taking out, so got waved on)
That wasn't in place in the Costa I went into (for eat in) last Thursday
 

Iskra

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I’ve not read every reply, but in response to the OP;

- There are people who can’t wear masks for various reasons.
- Seats only have to be 1m apart if it’s side by side or back to back. It’s 2m face to face or diagonally.
- As people should be wearing a mask in a cafe to move around, there is no need for distancing if people pass each other in the shop- so you can walk past a queue.
- Buildings weren’t designed with distancing in mind; I run a large, very busy cafe in a shopping centre. My seating and queuing is all within the guidelines, but my 3 toilets are accessed down a narrow corridor, one of my toilets is tiny but theoretically can accommodate 3 people. The guidelines don’t seem to provide any advice on what to do here. If I just closed them, I’d have uproar- it’s already dangerous enough just asking people to follow simple instructions/exercise common courtesy. Cafes are legally supposed to provide toilets, which is more important guidelines or law?
 

Iskra

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Because inspections, if you can call them that, are largely done over the phone. HSE budget having been slashed due to austerity and the drive to reel in what some saw as health and safety gone mad. I saw somewhere, nay gave been Private Eye, that they were asking forner inspectors to volunteer.
Food outlets get EHO visits which are certainly not done over the phone.
 

Bletchleyite

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- Buildings weren’t designed with distancing in mind; I run a large, very busy cafe in a shopping centre. My seating and queuing is all within the guidelines, but my 3 toilets are accessed down a narrow corridor, one of my toilets is tiny but theoretically can accommodate 3 people. The guidelines don’t seem to provide any advice on what to do here. If I just closed them, I’d have uproar- it’s already dangerous enough just asking people to follow simple instructions/exercise common courtesy. Cafes are legally supposed to provide toilets, which is more important guidelines or law?
The best approach to this I've seen, in a few places, is that if you have toilets where it would be impossible to distance you simply make the whole facility usable by only one person, i.e. put a lock (or just a vacant/engaged sign) on the back of the main entry door instead of the individual cubicles.
 

Iskra

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The best approach to this I've seen, in a few places, is that if you have toilets where it would be impossible to distance you simply make the whole facility usable by only one person, i.e. put a lock (or just a vacant/engaged sign) on the back of the main entry door instead of the individual cubicles.
That sounds sensible but wouldn’t work in my specific case, as I’d cause more problems with people queuing down the narrow corridor for all 3 toilets, which could then spill into the seating area, impede a fire exit and impede staff access to staff areas. And there’s no lock on the door to the gents as it’s urinals and a cubicle.
 

Mugby

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Who exactly is going to pay for these 'mystery shoppers' Many shops are already having to employ extra staff to do precisely nothing other than meet and greet, they also have the additional costs of all the paraphernalia of signs, one way systems, sanitation stations etc.
As seen daily on the news, many high street names are disappearing at an alarming rate, the last thing they need is yet more unnecessary expense.

The truth is, social distancing is dead in the water and it isn't making a scrap of difference. It was always very much a case of 'We must do something regardless of how futile it may be'

As far as the situation in pubs is concerned, well done to those who have adapted their beer gardens and arranged the tables to the required spacing.
I imagine the majority of them are working quite satisfactorily at the present time, but are you really going to sit in a beer garden in the depths of winter?
 

Crossover

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Before our local restrictions were imposed (even though they legally applied from only a few minutes ago, but I digress...) I visited a couple of venues with friends (different households), none of which I believe asked whether the people dining were part of the same household and in some cases we were just on normal tables, be it separated from the rest of the tables. Also visited a pub where we were sat outside and there was a group of, I’d wager 12 or so, people sat shoulder to shoulder on a set of tables down the ‘garden’ (a long way) from us

Personally I felt at ease with it and thought it was within the guidelines (well, maybe apart from the dozen...) and to be honest, can’t see how it could have worked any other way.
 

Richard Scott

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Has the slow increase in cases escaped your notice, then?
So nothing to do with implementation of your beloved face masks then? Before people generally did follow rules now they feel safe so no distancing at all? Supposed to have been 1m with a mask. Better if removed masks and stuck to 1m. Not going to happen now though is it. Looks like masks gave backfired.
 

DavidB

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Has the slow increase in cases escaped your notice, then?
Unless everyone is told to stay at home, that is likely to happen until there is sufficient immunity in the population.

Why do so many people seem to be treating this virus as if it's completely different to every other cold or flu virus (which it has many similarities to)?
 

northernchris

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So nothing to do with implementation of your beloved face masks then? Before people generally did follow rules now they feel safe so no distancing at all? Supposed to have been 1m with a mask. Better if removed masks and stuck to 1m. Not going to happen now though is it. Looks like masks gave backfired.
I think this is the case - wasn't there a report a few weeks ago that said the concern was wearing masks would get people thinking they didn't need to social distance?
 

Bletchleyite

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Unless everyone is told to stay at home, that is likely to happen until there is sufficient immunity in the population.
So how do you explain that it wasn't happening earlier in the situation, when people were taking distancing more seriously (even to the extent of walking round one another in the street)?

People have let it go and it has caused spread. They need to start taking it seriously again, and that would be led by businesses they interact with daily being sure to do it 100% correctly, too.

Why do so many people seem to be treating this virus as if it's completely different to every other cold or flu virus (which it has many similarities to)?
Because (a) it is novel so there are many unknowns, and (b) it is far more serious.

I think this is the case - wasn't there a report a few weeks ago that said the concern was wearing masks would get people thinking they didn't need to social distance?
It's a possible concern (one for the masks thread though) - but the correct answer is not to remove them but to get distancing being respected properly again.
 

DavidB

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I think this is the case - wasn't there a report a few weeks ago that said the concern was wearing masks would get people thinking they didn't need to social distance?
It does appear to be the case. I've avoided shops as much as possible since the masks rule came in, but even in the few I've been in it's clear that people are no longer bothering with distancing for the most part.
 

DavidB

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So how do you explain that it wasn't happening earlier in the situation, when people were taking distancing more seriously (even to the extent of walking round one another in the street)?
Most of the shops were closed. It was not a workable situation unless you wanted the bankrupt the economy fairly quickly.

Because (a) it is novel so there are many unknowns, and (b) it is far more serious.
There actually aren't that many unknowns now - it's been around long enough to know how it progresses through a population, and similar viruses have been seen before, including several of those which cause colds. As to being mroe serious, that's also debatable - some view put it in a simialr range to flu (see the Oxford CEBM articles).

It's a possible concern (one for the masks thread though) - but the correct answer is not to remove them but to get distancing being respected properly again.
I didn't doubt that your solution would be more restrictions and / or enforcement - it always is!
 

birchesgreen

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Most of the shops were closed. It was not a workable situation unless you wanted the bankrupt the economy fairly quickly.
Yes considering how much of the economy has reopened over the last month or so an increase in infection rate would be expected, it is probably quite surprising the increase hasn't been notably more than it has been.

But that would be a good news of course not doom and gloom and thus verboten.
 

richw

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There’s a simple solution to the original post.

personal responsibility

If you personally Feel that you’re unhappy or feel unsafe with conditions in an establishment you are under no obligation to shop or eat or drink there. The details in the original post, if it was such a concern to you on safety of the virus the big question is why did you continue to use those establishments?
 

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