THE licensee of three York pubs has confirmed that they won't be reopening on Saturday.

Paul Crossman tweeted that the Swan, the Slip Inn and Volunteer Arms in the Clementhorpe area would all remain closed for the time being.

Mr Crossman, who has been leading national calls for urgent action to save pubs facing huge losses due to the coronavirus crisis, added: “We’re not saying never, just not yet! Like many smaller community-focused pubs we will wait until we can open in a way that’s sufficiently safe, enjoyable and viable. Cheers."

He said last month said the three pubs would not be opening on July 4 and would struggle to open at all in July due to the significant challenges pubs faced falling in line with current social distancing guidelines.

He was chairing the national Campaign for Pubs, which had published its '10 Points to Save Pubs' and wanted an immediate announcement confirming July 4 as the reopening day and social distancing to be set at one, and not two metres.

He said this evening that even with the switch to one metre, it would be very difficult to ensure enough customers could come inside to make his smaller pubs viable.

He said he would watch how the situation unfolded after tomorrow, with a view to possibly reopening in August, but said more support was needed from the Government and property landlords needed to cut their rents, or many pubs would close down for good.