Wetherspoons announces 66 workers test positive for coronavirus - with 50 pubs affected

14 September 2020, 11:51 | Updated: 14 September 2020, 12:42

Wetherspoons haven't confirmed which pubs are affected
Wetherspoons haven't confirmed which pubs are affected. Picture: PA
Polly Foreman

By Polly Foreman

Wetherspoons have insisted its pubs are still safe to visit.

JD Wetherspoon has revealed that 66 of its workers have tested positive for coronavirus, with 50 pubs being affected by the outbreaks.

The pub chain, which has 861 open branches in the UK, has said that the vast majority of its locations haven't recorded any cases.

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It has confirmed that infected staff are spread out over 50 pubs, and two branches have had up to four workers test positive for Covid-19.

Some Wetherspoons staff have tested positive for Covid-19
Some Wetherspoons staff have tested positive for Covid-19. Picture: PA

In addition, 40 pubs have reported one worker infected, while six have confirmed two.

The pub has confirmed that 28 of the 66 workers who tested positive have returned to work after self-isolating, and most of the cases were mild or asymptomatic.

They have not revealed which pubs have been affected by the outbreaks. Owner Tim Martin said, according to the BBC: "Whenever there has been a situation we have dealt with the local press, public health and the council."

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He also argued against claims made by disease expert Professor Hugh Pennington that pubs are "dangerous", saying: "The situation with regard to pubs has been widely misunderstood."

Wetherspoons has a number of safety measures in place
Wetherspoons has a number of safety measures in place. Picture: PA

Professor Pennington said last month that pubs are "far, far more dangerous places to be" when discussing the issue of kids returning to school.

The company has said its invested £15million into hygiene and social distancing measures, and Mr Martin argued that pubs and shops are safer than homes.

He said: "It is much easier to inadvertently pass on the virus in someone's house, where people are more relaxed and less vigilant."

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