Police won’t snoop on pubs for substantial meals as it has ‘other priorities’

Cops won’t be raiding boozers and snooping on punters to make sure they’re eating "substantial" grub, a top officer said.

Pubs opened their doors in Tiers 1 and 2 again yesterday as the national lockdown came to an end.

Brits have fumed at the new rules which say they have to have grub alongside their pints.

Where some celebrated the return of boozers by guzzling breakfast pints, others slammed locals for enforcing drink limits.

Drinkers in Tier 2 can only buy a round if they have a “substantial” meal with it, and some pubs have limited the number of pints a customer can get.

Some moaned that the rule was “the most ridiculous” restriction since the pandemic began.

Others tweeted about the ways locals have got around the rule – with one serving a single sausage for £1 that comes with 10% off a pint, The Sun reported.

A police chief has now said that cops will not be checking up on pubs – saying that should be the job of a local council.

And Deputy Chief Constable Paul Netherton, the lead for civil contingencies at the National Police Chiefs’ Council, had his say on the Scotch Egg debate.

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He told iNews: “Police will not be visiting pubs checking on what people are eating. If we are faced with an issue, we may issue warnings and take action. We have other priorities.”

He added: “A substantial meal is not a new thing and the police understand its meaning. If you are sitting at the bar eating a Scotch egg in your hand with your pint, that’s not a substantial meal.

“If you are sitting at a table with a knife and fork, a Scotch egg and salad, especially with beetroot and pickle, on a plate then it is a substantial meal.”

The rules differ between each pub, with boozers in the toughest Tier 3 zone only able to operate as takeaway only.

On Tuesday, under pressure from MPs in his own party, Boris Johnson announced an extra £1,000 funding for pubs who have been forced to remain closed in Tiers 1 and 2.

Both the trade bodies UKHospitality and CAMRA also said the figure is well below what business owners need to save their livelihoods and protect jobs.

Under the controversial Tier system only 732 pubs out of 38,277 in the UK will be open.

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