Pubs set to stay shut for FIVE MONTHS until May as Boris Johnson mulls extending lockdown and only lifting it slowly

PUBS are set to be shut for FIVE MONTHS with Boris Johnson looking at extending the national lockdown.

Thirsty Brits were today dealt another blow when it was revealed punters may not be back in pubs until May.

Brits were ordered to stay at home until mid-February when the emergency shutdown was launched.

But now Number 10 is said to be looking at at March 23 –  the year anniversary of the start of the first lockdown – as a more realistic date to end the lockdown, according to The Daily Mail.

And the Prime Minister has warned several times that restrictions that are currently in place will be lifted gradually rather than all at once.

MAYDAY

Boozers will be one of the last businesses to reopen, with ministers looking at the bank holiday on May 3 as a possible date.

A source told The Sunday Times: “The May Day bank holiday is more likely the moment you see pubs reopening.”

Experts believe people are less likely to social distance once they've had a drink.

It's another devastating blow for the hospitality industry as thousands of pubs will face collapse.

And last week takeaway pints were banned when the third national lockdown was announced.

However, food and non-alcoholic drinks are still able to be sold as takeaway items or through click-and-collect and drive-through until 11pm.

It comes as calls are mounting for harsher restrictions to be introduced immediately to curb the spread of Covid-19.


TIGHTER RESTRICTIONS

Nurseries could close and face masks could be made compulsory under tougher lockdown rules.

Health experts are calling for the drastic new rules to stop the spread of Covid with more than 80,000 deaths recorded and more than 3million cases.

Currently, Brits have been told to stay home with non-essential shops closed and families banned from seeing each other.

Schools are also closed until the end of February for the majority of students but nurseries are allowed to remain open.

But scientists believe the measures do not go far enough to stop cases exploding and are instead calling for a "total clampdown".

They believe nurseries should be closed as well as places of worship with it made compulsory to wear face masks in public.

Independent Sage member Anthony Costello, a professor of global health at UCL and a former WHO director, told The Mirror: "We are in a national crisis with a pandemic out of control.

"We should have no nurseries open, no synagogues, no churches, no mosques. We should have compulsory masks, two-metre distancing.

"We have to take this really seriously – that's what Asian states did.

"The longer we allow it to go on transmitting, the quicker we are going to get a resistant virus to a vaccine, then we are in real doo-doo."

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