POPULAR pub chain JD Wetherspoon has revealed how it plans to keep both its customers and staff safe when its pubs reopen.

The company, which owns The Penny Black on Witton Street, will open when it has the official go-ahead from the Government.

Two new full-time roles have been created per pub to regularly clean surfaces, door handles, handrails and other touch points, with screens also being erected in front of tills.

There will also be screens to create seating areas where it is not possible to separate tables to comply with coronavirus social distancing requirements.

Evie Emmerson, manager at The Penny Black, said: “At present, the Government has not confirmed any reopening date for pubs.

“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.”

Wetherspoon says it will provide gloves, masks and protective eyewear for employees, who can choose whether to wear them or not.

There will be an average of ten hand sanitiser dispensers around each pub, including at the entrance for customers and staff to use.

Every employee will need to complete and sign a daily health assessment questionnaire to confirm that they are fit to work, which will include having their temperature taken.

Dedicated staff will monitor the pub at all times to maintain social distancing standards and there will be a member of staff on the door at peak times.

Customers will be asked to use the Wetherspoon order and pay app wherever possible, or pay at the bar via card and contactless, although cash will still be accepted.

Staff will hand over all drinks holding the base of the glass and when ordered by the app, they will be delivered to the table on a tray and placed on the table using the base of the glass.

Pubs will also offer a slightly reduced menu and will provide condiments in sachets rather than bottles.

Opening hours will be as normal and all staff will receive a full briefing and training on the new way of running the pub.