Pubs and bars giant Stonegate to keep venues open for Queen’s funeral


he UK’s biggest pub group has said it plans to keep venues open next Monday and show footage of the Queen’s funeral.

It comes as the vast majority of retailers have said they will shut their doors during the day as a mark of respect for the Queen.

However, Stonegate, which runs around 4,500 pubs and bars, said its managed venues will remain open to allow punters to celebrate the life of the Queen.

The Walkabout and Slug & Lettuce owner said those running its leased and tenanted pubs will decide separately whether to open their doors on the day, which will be a public bank holiday.

A spokeswoman for Stonegate Group said: “The passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is a momentous and sombre occasion.

“We send our deepest condolences to the royal family at this sad time.

“Our managed pubs, bars and venues remain open and, where possible, will show the funeral on Monday September 19 to honour her life and service.

“Across our leased and tenanted estate, our pub partners will make an independent decision applicable to their business and community.

“To find what’s on at your nearest pub, please visit their website and social media accounts.”

Meanwhile, Heineken’s pub arm, Star Pubs & Bars, said it may keep some venues open for the day as well, allowing independent leaseholders to decide.

Lawson Mountstevens, managing director of Star, said: “We were deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Her Majesty The Queen.

“Our thoughts are with the royal family and also with the nation as a whole, whose hearts she captured and whose respect she earned over years of selfless service.

“We know that millions of people across the UK will want to come together in their local pub to celebrate her life, share memories and pay their respects.

“The Star Pubs & Bars’ estate encompasses a wide variety of individual pubs which are leased to independent licensees to run as their own.

“Licensees will be working to choose the most fitting and appropriate way for their pubs to pay their respects and mark this sad occasion.

“This will include which opening hours will best meet the needs of their local community on September 19 or whether to close.”

There is no requirement for hospitality operators or retailers to shut their doors on the day of the funeral.

The Government guidance is: “Some businesses may wish to consider closing or postponing events, especially on the day of the state funeral, however, this is at the discretion of individual businesses.”

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