All McDonald's restaurants in UK to close by tomorrow
All McDonald’s restaurants in the UK are set to close indefinitely by 7pm tomorrow evening due to coronavirus.
Previously, the chain had closed its seating areas but still offered takeaway and drive-thru services.
In a statement, a company spokesperson said: ‘This is not a decision we are taking lightly, but one made with the wellbeing and safety of our employees in mind as well as the best interests of our customers.
‘We will work with local community groups to responsibly distribute food and drink from our restaurants in the coming days.
‘Thank you to our brilliant employees for their hard work during this incredibly challenging time.
‘We look forward to seeing you all again as soon as it is safe for us to reopen.’
The company had previously been offering free drinks to those in the emergency services, health and social care workers if they showed their work IDs.
Chief executive Paul Pomroy said this evening: ‘Over the last 24 hours, it has become clear that maintaining safe social distancing whilst operating busy takeaway and Drive Thru restaurants is increasingly difficult and therefore we have taken the decision to close every restaurant in the UK and Ireland by 7pm on Monday 23 March.
‘We have not taken this decision lightly and know that our restaurants have been playing an important role in the community providing hundreds of thousands of free drinks to frontline health and social workers and emergency services personnel.
‘But I have been clear throughout this that we would only continue to operate whilst it was safe for our people and together with our franchisees, we feel now is the time to make this decision to temporarily close.
‘I want to thank every single one of our 135,000 employees. I am so proud of them all for adapting so quickly to a constantly evolving work environment, taking every step to keep our customers, couriers and teams safe and looking after each other so very well.’
In a statement last week, Mr Pomroy had said: ‘Our restaurants will remain open for as long as it is safe to do so.
‘In the last 24 hours it has become clear that we need to temporarily change our operations to ensure the wellbeing of our employees and customers consistent with the Government’s guidance on social distancing.’
The chain’s annual Monopoly promotion had also been paused until later in the year.
Mr Pomroy said: ‘This year’s prizes include a number of luxury holidays, European city breaks and cruises which will have all been impacted by current and ongoing restrictions on international travel.
‘Following conversations with our suppliers and prize partners, we feel it is appropriate to delay the promotion until later this year.’
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