There has been a hugely emotional response in Southport tonight after bars, cafes and restaurants around the UK were ordered to shut.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson made the announcement in this evening’s Coronavirus news conference.

Southport business owners, workers and customers were left devastated by the closures, but vowed to come back stronger.

No-one yet knows how long the closures will last as Britain continues to battle against COVID-19.

Spender’s Bar

Spender’s Bar owner Paul Drewery said: “Tonight is the last night after the PM’s speech.

“It’s with a heavy heart that we have to announce we will be closed at the end of trade on Saturday night for the foreseeable future with the current situation.

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“We will be back bigger, and stronger than ever once this horrible situation has resolved itself.

“I just want to say a massive thank you, firstly to all my loyal staff, who have insisted on at least staying open this weekend even when given the choice. They will all still be behind the bar when we reopen to carry on the party!

“Secondly a huge thank you to all our friends and customers who have kept the bar going for 10 years in June, we truly couldn’t have done it without you.

“With my wife Chantelle due to give birth to our daughter in the week in June, they have to be my priority. Can’t wait for you all to see her on the other side!

“Southport, stay safe and look after each other.”

Remedy

The owners of Remedy, Susannah Porter and Sarah Simcock, said: “Tonight we will be closing our doors as a response to the COVID-19 crisis that affects us all.

“We hope this is a very temporary measure but in the meantime we will be taking good care of our incredible team as best we can. Our aim is that you see the same smiling faces when we eventually re-open.

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“We’d like to thank you for your continued and unwavering support, take good care of yourselves and we’ll see you on the other side. We will remain open until last orders tonight.”

The Office

A spokesman for The Office bar and restaurant said: “Following new government advice on COVID-19 and the consequent impact on the hospitality industry as a whole, we have taken the decision to temporarily close our restaurant and bar from 5pm on Friday 20th March.

“This is not a decision we’ve taken lightly but we are confident it’s the right one for our staff and guests. We’re sorry to those of you who had bookings with us.

“We will re-open when the time is right and information will be available via our social channels.

“We wish good health for your and your families during these uncertain times.”

Chocolate Whirled

A spokesman for Chocolate Whirled said: “Starting with the positive… It’s been our hardest and longest week since opening and your support has been amazing.

“On a not so positive note, we are absolutely gutted to be forced into making the decision to fully close after tomorrow as a shop, cafe and activity centre.

“Due to tonight’s government advice, we will now be changing plans for tomorrow and we will be open to buy Easter or whatever items from our shop or to buy takeaway drinks, cakes, chocolates and ice creams only.

“We will be removing all chairs from our cafe, we will continue to have hand sanitizer out to use and we will continue to constantly sanitize all hard surfaces.

“So, we will be open tomorrow 10-4pm and this will be our last day open as a shop and some form of cafe or activity centre for at least 3 months.

“We have loads of ideas about alternative options we can offer, and will be sharing these next week, but for this weekend, we just need to focus on getting through tomorrow and then trying to work out what’s actually going on and where we go from here!

“Thank you for bearing with us at this horrible, strange time.”

Cheshire Lines

“Goodnight and god bless to all of our amazing customers – we couldn’t have got through such turbulent times without you and we sincerely thank each and every one of you for supporting your local. Now the time has come to close the doors one last time we love you all.

“PS – we will be back better than ever.”

The Fisherman’s Rest 

“We are closing as outlined by Big Boris this evening at Midnight tonight!
“We would like to stress to you that this is a temporary measure, and as soon as we are legally allowed to re-open to the public, WE WILL!
“Jill, Ed & I would like to thank everyone, for your ongoing support. I know the team will miss you all too. Stay safe everyone. I will keep you updated.
“Kind regards Mark x”

Potting Shed

A spokesman said: “We are now closed until further notice. We would like to thank everyone for the fantastic support since we initially opened, you’ve all been amazing! We will issue a further statement when we have more information. Please all ensure you stay safe and well.”

Bistrot Pierre

Nick White, CEO of Bistrot Pierre, said: “We want to reassure all of our loyal customers that we will be returning after this dreadful crisis, bringing our great, French-inspired food and service to all of the communities we’ve enjoyed serving over the last 25 years.

“To our customers, we will sincerely miss serving you during this period and thank you for the loyalty you have shown us over the last quarter of a decade. Please be rest assured that we are doing everything possible to look after our teams during these tough and unprecedented times. and we will endeavor to re-open our bistrots as soon as we are able.”

DO you have a story for Stand Up For Southport? Email me at: mediaandrewbrown@gmail.com

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