Ireland’s pubs are expected to remain closed until at least 2024, with a provisional reopen date set for late 2024.
The announcement was made by the newly appointed Chairman of the National Authority for Eventual Crisis Response Dr Clive Murphy.
Dr Murphy was speaking at an online press conference from Government Buildings.
The announcement – some good news
Dr Murphy described the announcement from Leinster House as “today’s good news story.”
“Of course there will have to be some restrictions and conditions applying to the long-awaited pub reopening he told the press and said that the Government is still considering various options for a “controlled relaxation.”
“We are very aware of the unique social and economic factors surrounding the Irish Pub.
“And we are aware that for many Irish pint drinkers it already seems like years since they last supped a pint — so a few more years will hardly kill them.” Dr Murphy, who is himself a non-drinking man said.
“While we can’t give an exact date for pub reopening we expect that all being well it might be as early as December 2024. Now isn’t that a bit of good news?” The doctor asked.
A gradual relaxation – easing of restrictions
“Of course, there will have to be conditions attached to what we envisage as a gradual relaxation of the closures. We need to keep up the auld social distancing thingy.”
“For example, we are thinking of lifting the ban initially for men only. I mean we will allow women into bars eventually, but that might take an extra few years yet — we just have to wait and see.”
“We will also require that those pubs that are allowed reopen — we envisage one pub in every town — will install what we are calling social-distancing cubicles.
These will be clear plastic tubes where the customer can sit on his own and avoid coming into direct contact with other customers. All bar tops will need to install a system of revolving trays where your order is delivered, and of course, pints will need to be supped through disposable straws while wearing a facemask.”
Prices rise expected – to make up for losses
“Again as we need to make up for the economic loss to the central exchequer,” Dr Murphy went on.
“The price of a pint will have to carry a small extra tax burden. We envisage lobbing an extra fiver on a pint and ten-quit on real fancy cocktails like Bacardi and Coke or Gin and Tonic.
“I mean those feckers who drink those fancy drinks can fecking afford it so they can. And don’t even start me on that lot who drink shagging craft beers – that pretentious lot!” the doctor concluded.
An increase on the legal drinking age – over 35s only
Meanwhile in Ireland News has also learned that the government hopes to reduce the numbers in pubs by increasing the legal age for buying alcohol to thirty-five.
Another proposal under consideration which the government hopes will cut down on excessive numbers in pubs is the reduction of pub opening hours to from between eleven in the morning to mid-day.
When asked if Ireland’s pubs are to remain closed until at least 2024, a spokesperson from the Vintners Association of Ireland said, “Ah, well, you have to laugh.”