London nightclub operator mounts legal challenge to 10pm curfew

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The legal team of Jeremy Joseph, owner of London’s GAY nightclub, has written to UK secretary of state Matt Hancock with a formal challenge to the 10pm curfew on hospitality premises.

Jeremy Joseph said, “The 10.00pm curfew which has now been in place for the last two weeks and has been detrimental to the hospitality sector, including GAY, makes absolutely no sense. It does the opposite of protecting people by pushing them onto the street at the same time. They are going from being safe inside venues with staggered closing times to unsafe on overcrowded streets and overloaded public transport.

“This government has failed to show why the 10.00pm curfew was put in place and has published no scientific evidence to substantiate its implementation. It seems to direct the blame for this action on the sector, consistently treating the night-time economy as a scapegoat when, in fact, we have years of operational experience of keeping customers safe, and have spent substantial time and effort making sure our venues are covid secure.

“Enough is enough. Matt Hancock and Boris Johnson have to be made accountable and today we have instructed our legal team with the support of the NTIA to serve the government with a Pre-Action Protocol for Judicial Review to challenge the decision to implement the national curfew of 10.00pm on the hospitality sector.”

Michael Kill chief executive of the Night Time Industries Association, said, “The implementation of the 10.00pm curfew and further restrictions on the sector has had a catastrophic impact on business levels, resulting in thousands of businesses making the difficult decision to close the doors, or make staff redundant.

“The decision to implement a curfew makes no sense and has no published scientific or medical foundation to reduce transmission rates. If anything, it is counterproductive, with thousands leaving hospitality venues at 10.00pm, creating mass gatherings on the street and overcrowding public transport.”

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