With new restrictions due to come into force on Monday, pubs and venues across Andover have been preparing for the new rules due to come into force.

While social distancing has been a fact of life for many months now, more stringent rules are due to come in on Monday, limiting individuals from different households to meeting in groups of six or less.

Covid marshals will be introduced to enforce the new rules, while it will be mandatory for businesses like pubs to enforce test and trace, keeping records for 21 days, or face penalties.

Andover’s publicans have already put plans in place for the new rules. Pete Richards, landlord at the Town Mills, told The Advertiser that he has “heavily invested” in a tablet till system, allowing waiting staff to submit orders virtually. Pete said: “People don’t want to go into pubs and use apps if they aren’t technical or old, so we bring the app to them.”

As well as hi-tech solutions, others are taking advantage of their greatest asset – the pubs themselves. Zandor Lowe, landlord at The Globe, said that people at the tables were “limited to about four, and no more than 6 anyway as they couldn’t fit around the table!”

He’s made use of upstairs space as a “Covid overspill,” and says he is able to enforce “a one-way system here quite easily.” He added that he would “like to be one of the venues that performs well in all this.”

At Andover’s nightlife venues, similar measures are also being put in place to keep to the new rules. The owner of Spin Bar said that their system was “as good as we can get,” with enforced limits on table numbers, table service and thermometers used to keep guests safe.

Next door, Cameo said that all visitors “have to do track and trace,” as well as a one-way system which “you can’t go back through,” in addition to table service and regular cleaning. A visitor to the club was positive about their work to keep customers safe, saying: “Cameo appreciates social distancing.”

As well as more stringent social distancing measures, the government also announced a new slogan - Hands, Face, Space – to describe the behaviours all members of the public are expected to follow. More details of the announcement can be found on the government’s website.