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Hospitality and Tourism

Supporting hands with coronavirus germ

This page was updated on the 30 November 2021

It is not a legal requirement to wear face coverings in most premises classed as hospitality and tourism. However it is a now a legal requirement for Customers and Employees to wear face coverings in Shops, therefore if your premises has a shop face coverings will be required in those parts of your premises.

Carrying out risk assessments

Businesses still have a legal duty to manage risks to those affected by their business. The way to do this is to carry out a health and safety risk assessment, including the risk of COVID-19, and to take reasonable steps to mitigate the risks you identify. Many control measures that have been in place previously were there due to health and safety legislation rather than the specific coronavirus legislation. It remains very important to implement suitable control measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 between employees and members of the public.

When undertaking your risk assessment you must have regard to the available guidance. Following the guidance is not compulsory, unless specifically stated, and you are free to take other action, so long as the same level of protection is achieved. But if you do follow the guidance you will normally be doing enough to comply with the law. Health and safety inspectors seek to secure compliance with the law and may refer to guidance. Failure to implement suitable control measures may lead to formal action being taken against the duty holder(s).

For more information on COVID-19 risk assessments see HSE - Coronavirus.

It is also important to remember that your risk assessment and subsequent controls will be influenced by the prevalence of COVID-19 in the general population of Preston, the numbers of people in Preston who have received their vaccine and the demographics of your customers (Age, general health etc). When the prevalence of COVID-19 in the general population is considered high then businesses will be expected to implement stricter control measures. When the prevalence of COVID-19 is lower in the general population then fewer or less strict control measures maybe acceptable.

High COVID-19 cases in Lancashire and stricter control measures

Currently the prevalence of COVID-19 in population of Preston and Lancashire is very high and businesses will be expected to have more and stricter control measures. These include:

  • Asking staff and customers to clean their hands regularly;
  • Cleaning surfaces that people touch regularly;
  • Reducing unnecessary contact in the workplace, where it is practical. This means ensuring different groups of customers remain separate and keeping employees working in bubbles etc;
  • Ensuring that all indoor spaces are well ventilated (ensuring windows and doors are opened) and utilising outdoor space where practical.

Guidance 

The government, in consultation with industry, has produced guidance to help ensure workplaces are as safe as possible, this is the HM Government Guidance. When undertaking your risk assessment you must have regard to the available guidance.

Following the guidance is not compulsory, unless specifically stated, and you are free to take other action, so long as the same level of protection is achieved. 

You should read the guidance on our Employers and Employees COVID-19 Pages for general advice as well as reading our sector specific guidance

If you do follow the guidance you will normally be doing enough to comply with the law. Health and safety inspectors seek to secure compliance with the law and may refer to guidance. Failure to implement suitable control measure may lead to formal action being taken against the duty holder(s).

Posters that all businesses should display

Many hospitality businesses contain a mixture of types of premises and therefore maybe subject to varying restrictions in different areas of the premises. For example you may need to consider the advice for Shops, Licensed premises or Leisure Facilities.

Further information

Hotels and other guest accommodation

Indoor and outdoor attractions

Business events

Outdoor events

General guidance

Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) advice

National Counter Terrorism Security Office advice

Frequently Asked Questions

Do staff and customers customers have to wear a face covering?

Face coverings are currently not required by law. However, the government expects and recommends that people continue to wear face coverings in crowded, enclosed spaces. Where worn correctly, this may reduce the risk of transmission to themselves and others. Be aware that workers may choose to wear a face covering in the workplace. Consider encouraging, for example through signage, the use of face coverings by customers and workers, particularly in indoor areas where they may come into contact with people they do not normally meet. This is especially important in enclosed and crowded spaces.

If you have a shop on your premises staff and customers will need to wear face coverings, you should read our guidance on shops. 

Do I have to take down personal details for Test and Trace? 

Being able to identify and trace persons who maybe infectious remains a top priority for the government. Takeaway premises are strongly encouraged to display an official NHS QR code poster. Although not legally required to do so, this will support NHS Test and Trace to contact those who may have been exposed to COVID-19 so that they can book a test. You can generate an NHS QR code poster online, to enable individuals to check in using the NHS COVID-19 app. You should also have a system in place to record contact details for those who do not have the app. See our  Test and Trace Register Template [253.4KB]

Can a customer pay with cash?

Contactless payment is the preferred payment method however, customers can pay with cash. We would recommend staff wash their hands after handling money. Icon for pdf Contactless Payments: Poster [588.19KB]  

Do I need a Perspex screen at my till or reception?

In short, yes or employees must wear a face visor, especially if you do not require customers to wear face coverings. The Perspex screen acts as a barrier when members of the public are talking to employees. It is foreseeable that members of the public will enter your premises without wearing a face covering therefore putting your employees at risk, even if your employees are wearing a face covering.

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