Pub and restaurant bosses praise customers for 'not letting us down'

Iain McCarten, Last Brasserie, Norwich

Iain McCarten, chef and owner of the Last Brasserie, Norwich. He served around 40 people at lunchtime and nobody let him down by not turning up if they'd reserved a table. - Credit: Denise Bradley

Owners of pubs and restaurants in Norfolk were given a boost by happy customers who turned up in their droves after lockdown.

As the second day of reopening also saw sunshine and blue skies bringing out people desperate for a long-awaited meal or drink outdoors, business owners were beaming.

Last Brasserie, Norwich

Chris Cloke and Kelly Barrow, enjoying a meal at the Last Brasserie, which is currently open at lunchtimes only. - Credit: Denise Bradley

Many bosses had decided not to ask people to book tables - offering walk-in trade only - and were not disappointed. Others who had accepted reservations said people turned up without putting down a deposit.

Iain McCarten, chef and owner at the Last Brasserie, St George's Street, who is currently only opening at lunchtimes, said they'd served around 40 people with no, no shows.

"I've been checking the weather every day. There was just a shift in the atmosphere in Norwich. When I came into work you could just tell people had gone from gloomy to being really happy.

"We also had some walk-ins for our tables at the front which was really nice."

At Harry's in Chapelfield Gardens, where there are seven tables available outside for food and drink, owner Annie Serruys said they were 'pretty full' from lunchtime into the evening.

Norwich Lanes

Pubs, restaurants and bars are enjoying a much-needed boost as people come out to eat and drink in the city. - Credit: Denise Bradley

They found after reopening after the last lockdown and taking reservations that some people let them down. "That's why we decided not to take any bookings and I was really happy with how it turned out. We are just as busy today as people want to sit in the sun and have a drink and why wouldn't you want a burger too with a beer?"

Gibraltar Gardens, Norwich

The team at the Gibraltar Gardens in Norwich before service. They said it had been very busy with customers. - Credit: Gibraltar Gardens

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At the Gibraltar Gardens, Heigham Street, Norwich, customers also did not let them down. A spokeswoman said: "We decided not to take deposits but we were crazily busy."

The Garnet, Norwich

Pubs like this the Garnet in Norwich were busy yesterday and doing great custom again because of the sunny weather. - Credit: Denise Bradley

And out of the city, it was a similar picture. Samantha Coxall, who runs the Rose and Crown, Frettenham, north of Norwich, said: "We were busy all day, we decided not to take bookings, just walk-ins on the day and we were pretty much full most of the day. Today has not been quite as busy but we are hoping it will be after work again."

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