LANDLORDS have welcomed Boris Johnson's announcement that they can reopen on July 4 - but say they have not had long enough to prepare.

New safety measures including a one-metre distance rule and a ban on bar service have also raised concerns.

Licensees say many will struggle, depending on the size, layout and outdoor space, and will need ongoing support - or face closure.

Publicans and brewers have also warned that 11 days notice is not enough, especially with the Government expecting pubs to collect customer data.

Paul Crossman, of The Swan, The Slip Inn and Volunteer Arms, who chairs the national Campaign for Pubs, said many pubs would struggle to be viable with a table service rule.

He said it would be a risk to reopen, unfurlough staff and restock, at great cost, only to discover it doesn't work.

"It's possible people will open under these restrictions and discover they have a loss-making enterprise. That's a real worry because that will hasten the demise of some pubs."

He believes some may wait and see whether restrictions are lifted further before opening.

Paul welcomed the one-metre rule but said capacity would be reduced if customers have to be seated.

"That takes space. If you haven't got space then you've got a problem. If you have outdoor space that might help but that's weather dependent.

"The PM has said if these guidelines are not right they will be rescinded. That's another risk.

"We already know businesses weren't insured for this first time round. There's no reason to think they will be second time. So if you get shut down within a couple of weeks you've lost all of that money restocking, and all of that knock-on down the supply chain - brewers will be beside themselves."

Many York pubs are small in historic buildings, making social distancing difficult, he said.

"Lots don't have outdoor space. Do the residents of York really want people drinking outside on the street as has been suggested?"

He said having the relaunch on a Saturday was 'a big worry'.

"It's throwing everyone in at the deep end. There's a danger of it being a massive kind of party day. I don't know how many pubs will actually want to handle that situation.

"It's a worry to think that we would be in the front line of having to police and regulate that situation with people potentially going off on one. We won't be opening our pubs on July 4."

He said pubs needed to see the detailed guidelines promised by the PM soon.

Big pubs may have prepared by putting in screened areas, but small pubs run by sole tenants did not have the resources to install measures 'just in case'.

He said staffing costs could 'go through the roof' with extra people needed to take bookings and man the doors for a limited number of customers.

This comes at a time when some pub tenants are already reeling from having to continue paying rents to pub landlords, with Paul facing a weekly £1,000 bill - to be paid in arrears over the next year and a half.

Ian Loftus, of the House of Trembling Madness, which has outlets in Stonegate and Lendal, said he expected the Lendal premises to reopen on July 4, with reduced capacity.

But, despite the reduced one-metre distance rule, he would try to maintain 1.5 to two metres.

Shelley Green, of the Evil Eye Lounge, Stonegate, said she would open because she could not afford to stay closed, but felt “very apprehensive”.

”I feel people might be apprehensive about coming, and people might be apprehensive about coming in to work,” she said.

She said she had visors for staff and screens for the bar, and had ordered hand sanitiser stations, to ensure the bar was as safe as possible.