Yesterday came the day many had been waiting for.
Pubs, restaurants and bars were able to open for outdoor customers as lockdown restrictions eased, also allowing non-essential shops, gyms and hairdressers to re-open.
After months of waiting, Salford revellers have been flocking to their local for that first sweet pint back.
Naturally, this has created a rush, with many pubs hitting maximum capacity and causing big queues.
The return of crowded seating areas has also brought back into prominence the NHS ‘Track and Trace’ system.
Bar-goers are advised to bring their phones with this installed, both to stop the spread of Coronavirus and to avoid being turned away.
Masks and social distancing are still as important and vital as ever as the nation looks to further reopen.
Many outlets have a booking system in place to ensure a steady stream of people so customers should check availability to avoid disappointment and long waiting times.
What do people think
With pubs and other businesses reopening comes the fear of another surge in cases.
We asked what some residents of Salford thought of pubs allowing customers back in.
“The guidelines are there, but I don’t think anyone will follow the guidelines so I’m a bit apprehensive about it.” one resident said. “I’d love the pub to be open, but I’m just worried about the after effects of it.
“I say I’m worried about the pub, but there is one right there and I want a drink with my friend that I haven’t seen for a long time. Just something that’s not a zoom call.”
At Vertigo, a plant-based eatery located in MediaCity, staff were excited about the reopening of pubs and restaurants.
“Personally I’m quite excited, it feels like a big milestone,” said on the workers. “I think with where we’re up to with the lockdown, personally this is way overdue.”
There was a consensus that after months of repetitive lockdowns and stresses it is a welcome return to normality.
Where to go
The Chapel Street riverside staple, The Old Pint Pot, is already managing bookings. A small number of walk-in tables are also available.
Student customer Ethan said: “That line to walk in was fully massive when we left.
“I’m fully glad we booked to get in, don’t think I could be arsed waiting otherwise. It would’ve been half an hour at least.
“The waiting times for drinks were quite long though. I felt there could have been a better experience in place.”
Food is also available for those looking to get some tasty pub snacks with their pint. A full meal is no longer required.
The Dockyard in MediaCity is also open and in Worsley, visitors to the Royal Oak can take advantage of a moderately-sized beer garden with a cozy aesthetic for a more quintessential British pub feel. The Moorings, also in the area, gives a picturesque waterside drinking experience, described as ‘a family-friendly’ experience for those with children.
The list of great pubs to go to in Salford is extensive but keep in mind the need to book in some places. Additionally, pubs without adequate outdoor seating will still be closed.
Also, before going out for a drink or to shop, wear a mask and ensure you have no Covid symptoms.