MERSEYSIDE Police is urging people to be safe ahead of the pubs and restaurants reopening tomorrow Saturday, July 4.

Businesses in the hospitality sector will be able to reopen tomorrow, provided that they meet government criteria for keeping staff and customers as safe as possible.

Dr Tristan Cope, Medical Director of Liverpool University Hospitals, said: “As lockdown measures are eased further with bars and restaurants opening up, we would encourage people to be safe.

“It is important people continue to follow social distancing instructions and the safety guidance to protect themselves and others from COVID-19, which remains a very serious health risk.

“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic NHS Staff and our hospitals have received incredible and generous support from the people of Liverpool. The best way to support the NHS now is by observing social distancing and having an enjoyable but safe time from this weekend onwards.”

Merseyside Police Assistant Chief Constable Natalie Perischine said: “This weekend is of course a significant step in the reopening of many businesses across Merseyside, but we must all tread carefully as people get used to how things will operate.

“Anyone intending to socialise in Merseyside this weekend needs to support each other, all businesses, and of course our emergency services, by going out in a responsible way.

“We are still sadly in the midst of a pandemic, and must do all we can to keep making progress. We simply cannot afford for this weekend to undo everyone’s efforts.

“The last thing anyone wants is for all Merseyside’s patience and selflessness to unravel and for lockdown measures to be reintroduced, as we are now seeing in other areas. We’d all be taking a massive backwards step and losing some hard-earned freedoms.

“Things will look and feel difference for those who are intending to go out. You’ll have to book in, queue up, and ensure social distancing is maintained throughout. People will need to be really patient and respect those who are working as hard as possible in these strange conditions including door staff, bar staff and people serving you.

“You’ll also see new processes in place, such as pedestrianised roads in places including Liverpool City Centre and Prescot Town Centre, to help people social distance outside bars. These measures are designed specifically with your safety in mind and we are hugely supportive of them.

“Planning a night out in advance has never been more important, so please ensure you’re allowed into where you want to go, stay safe from the spread of the virus, and ensure travel arrangements are in place so you can safely get home. Do your research and put the safety of yourself and others first.

“We’ll have a major policing operation in place alongside businesses and our Local Authorities this weekend. Our officers will be patrolling those busy city and town centres to encourage, explain and educate people, and we’ll be keeping a close eye on all of our key locations, through patrols, CCTV monitoring and measures such as Dispersal Zones, should they be necessary.

“Our emergency services don’t need any extra strain at these times, so remember that NHS staff need to be available for emergencies, not dealing with avoidable situations where people have overindulged or got into fights. If you do come out, enjoy yourselves, stay safe and be kind to each other.

“Report any concerns to us via 999 in an emergency, or through passing information via @MerPolCC or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, and we’ll take the appropriate action."

Councillor Jeanie Bell, Cabinet Member for Safer Communities at St Helens Borough Council, said: “We have been working with businesses throughout the pandemic helping them to diversify their offer to keep trading as we know the hospitality sector has been hugely affected by the closure. It’s important that we continue to support them and where they feel it’s safe to reopen we should all continue to support these businesses, many of which are independent and a vital part of our economy.

“When venues reopen from Saturday your experience will be very different with rules around how many people are allowed to make sure social distancing can be maintained, every visitor having to sit down and the limits around group sizes. It could mean queues to get into venues, with no loud music or live sport allowed to be shown indoors and potentially ordering drinks through apps only.

“We know it will be exciting for many to get back to your favourite pub or bar but please also think about residents living nearby and act responsibly by not drinking to excess.

"If there are particular problems around the safety of a venue we will not hesitate to take action with our partners if it is needed so all of have to play our part and behave in a way that means we can support businesses while reducing the impact of any anti-social kind of behaviour.”

To find out more about the reopening of licensed premises both for businesses and residents visit