While many bars have reopened regularly since the pandemic first struck in March 2020, especially after stage 2 of the Government's roadmap kicked in on April 12, the Half Moon in Knaresborough is one of a large minority whose lack of outdoor space has meant it has stayed closed for months on end.
But now the owners of the historic Half Moon at Abbey Road in Knaresborough have said they will be opening thanks to the imminent stage 3 relaxation of Covid rules.
Max and Katie Harrison said: "We'll be reopening at 5pm on Tuesday, May 18. Booking isn't essential but it's strongly advised. We're really looking forward to welcoming everyone."
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Located near the low bridge in Knaresborough, The Half Moon has thrived for much of the last ten years since an extensive and impressive refurbishment to this historic pub transformed its fortunes and reputation.
Despite its success with local craft beers and its offer of cheese and meat boards and pizza nights, it says it has not been viable to open its doors unless serving customers indoors was permitted
This proved to be a particular problem for the Half Moon when the tier system was in place.
When the whole of North Yorkshire was put into Tier 2 early last winter, the Harrisons said they could only open their popular pub if Harrogate was in Tier 1.
Even before then, reopening was a financial struggle for a small pub such as the Half Moon.
The pub did reopen in July 2020 as lockdown was temporarily relaxed but it found that the rules on social distancing and table serviced only forced it to work with reduced capacity inside and outside and twice as many team members per shift to accommodate the table service and additional cleaning requirements alongside reservation handling.
The Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to confirmed today that stage 3 of the lockdown roadmap, which also includes the reopening of indoor hospitality, will take place on May 17.
In Stage 3, all of the most high-risk sectors will be able to reopen, with Covid-secure guidance in place.
This includes the reopening of:
Remaining outdoor entertainment, such as outdoor theatres and cinemas.
Indoor entertainment, such as museums, cinemas and children’s play areas.
Remaining accommodation, such as hotels, hostels and B&Bs.
To book a table at the Half Moon in Knaresborough from May 18, visit www.thehalfmoonfreehouse.com
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