'They won't get a penny from me': Edinburgh residents react to Wetherspoon pubs announcing reopening plans

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Earlier today, JD Wetherspoon announced plans to safely reopen its pubs in Edinburgh as soon it gets the green-light from the Scottish Government - but it seems not everyone will be banging down their doors.

As reported, the pub chain - which has eight watering-holes in and around the Capital - will open when it has the official go-ahead from the Scottish Government.

Wetherspoon announced it is investing £11million into new measures to reopen all 875 of its UK pubs - including glass screens, entry and exit signs and thousands of hand sanitisers in a bid to ensure social distancing.

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The plans come after the chain was widely condemned for the treatment of its 43,000 staff as the lockdown started, with company boss Tim Martin reportedly advising his workers to seek employment in supermarkets before the UK Government stepped in with its furlough scheme.

JD Wetherspoon's plans to reopen were met with a muted response.JD Wetherspoon's plans to reopen were met with a muted response.
JD Wetherspoon's plans to reopen were met with a muted response. | Other 3rd Party

The chain strongly denied the claims at the time, saying: “Wetherspoon believes that the actions it has taken are responsible and sensible in the difficult circumstances.”

The news of the chain's new plans, posted today on the Evening News, provoked a strong reaction from readers across Edinburgh.

Steven Monteith wrote: "Boycott and support your local or independent boozer."

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Alan Easton said: "I'm looking forward to the Guildford Arms being reopened as well as the Malt Shovel. Much better pubs than any of the Wetherspoon pubs."

Lorraine Blyth commented: "I hope they are not relying on customer loyalty. I shall be showing the same loyalty they gave their staff."

Rosemary Young opined: "I will be avoiding Wetherspoons and using small local businesses as they have helped in the community."

William Dyer wrote: "They can open whenever they want - they won't get a penny from me."

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Darren Wilson wrote: "Who the hell is going to go for a meal being served by someone in an apron, gloves, face mask and protective eye wear - and then sit with perspex screens between tables? What a horrible experience that would be."

Graeme Stevens said: "Boycott. The way he treated his staff telling them to go to Tesco was horrendous. He shouldn't get custom from anyone.

Sarah Cooper commented: "Wetherspoons are soulless caverns of doom. Plus, they banned dugs, not to mention their treatment of their staff and Brexit propaganda beermats."

Helen Lee-Keenan wrote: "Their pubs are soulless and the food even worse."

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However, while most readers gave the impression they will be in no rush to visit a Wetherspoon pub, a few others offered a different view.

Chris Jervis said: "I’m looking forward to it even more now all these people will be boycotting."

Linda Gordon wrote: "So many people talking about boycotting Wetherspoons! The only people you are going to hurt here are the staff."

Speaking about the planning for reopenings, Jaikrishnan Vamalachandran, manager at The Standing Order, said: “At present the government have not confirmed any reopening date for pubs.

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“However, it is important that we are prepared for any announcement.

“We have spent a number of weeks consulting with staff who work in our pubs, as well as area managers in order to draw up our plans.

“The safety of staff and customers is paramount.”

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