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As of today, all restaurants and pubs will have to close their doors at 10pm in an attempt to stop the current upward trend in coronavirus cases, but McDonald's will be allowed to remain open past that as the company can offer drive-thru and delivery services.
Announced earlier in the week by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the new rules state: "Businesses and venues selling food for consumption off the premises, can continue to do so after 10pm as long as this is through delivery service or drive-thru."
So, while you won't be able to sit in the restaurants, McDonald's will still be able to maintain its regular opening hours - 24 hours each day, in some cases - where other restaurants will have to shut.
McDonald's UK and Ireland CEO Paul Pomroy confirmed: "With thanks to our delivery partners Uber Eats and Just Eat, more than 800 restaurants will also be offering McDelivery past 10pm."
However, Mr Pomroy went on to say that the chain would be looking closely at the rates of infection in certain areas, as well as local lockdown restrictions, and might end up closing some of its locations down if the number of coronavirus infections is too high.
He added: "We will be guided by local and national government regulations."
Experts from around the hospitality sector have criticised the new measures, with industry group UKHospitality stating that the future of the entire sector is 'still very much in the balance'.
UKHospitality Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: "The additional restrictions announced this week place even further burdens on a sector that is operating with razor-thin margins and needs all the help it can get. It is vital that these restrictions are reviewed regularly.
"We need comprehensive financial support so that those businesses that survive the winter can begin to rebuild next year, starting with a package of measures to support short time working.
"The VAT cut for hospitality must be extended through 2021, as must the business rates holiday. We also need the government to step in now and help to deal with the rent debt that has built up over months of enforced lockdown."
It is hoped that Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak will address some of those concerns around the hospitality industry in an announcement to be made later on this afternoon.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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