Pubs and restaurants across Oxfordshire have signed up for the government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme. It means that diners will be able to enjoy half-price meals throughout August, as part of a plan to boost restaurant and pub trade post-lockdown.

Eat Out to Help Out applies to eat-in food and drink on Monday to Wednesdays at more than 72,000 venues nationwide. The discount is capped at £10 per person and does not apply to alcohol.

It is the chancellor’s latest move to help boost an industry that has been badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Mr Sunak hopes that by offering up to £10 off a meal in August on certain days, it will encourage people to visit restaurants and cafes.

Around 80% of hospitality firms stopped trading in April, with 1.4 million workers furloughed – the highest of any sector – according to government data.

The government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme has launched

Many Oxfordshire venues which have reopened since 4 July have also been forced to operate at a lower capacity to comply with social distancing rules, and have invested heavily in transforming their outside spaces to meet the new guidelines and ensure the safety of their customers.

Read our story about Oxfordshire’s top pub transformations

Claire Alexander who runs The Killingworth Castle in Wootton and The Ebrington Arms in Chipping Camden welcomed the scheme. She said: “It’s a great idea and we are booking up fast as it only applies to us for four Wednesdays as we are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays now. We are busy anyway and turning lots of people away as we are operating with only half of our normal number of tables to make sure it is safe.”

“It might have been better for the government to focus on the scheme for the upcoming winter months ahead that are going to make or break the hospitality industry. We have had lots of customers tell us they feel safe with the precautions in place and they are coming back so that’s positive.”

The Killingworth Castle at Wootton

The promotion gives people a discount of up to 50% when eating or drinking soft drinks in a participating restaurant or other food establishment. It is valid all day Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3 to 31 August.

The maximum discount available is £10 per person when you eat or drink in.Food and drink will appear on the menu at full price, and the restaurant will deduct the money off the bill and claim it back from the government. 

Participating pubs and venues are supposed to offer the full 50% discount all day Monday to Wednesday and across the whole food and soft drink menu.The discount is only on food and drink that you intend to eat on the premises, so does not apply to takeaways. 

There is no limit on how many times you can use the discount, or for how many people, and it includes children.There’s no minimum spend and you don’t have to order food to be eligible. For example, a £3 coffee would cost £1.50 under the scheme.

Lots of local, independent pubs, restaurants and cafes are taking part, as well as big chains.Establishments can choose whether to sign up, and can join the scheme at any point. 

The Black Horse at Standlake is also taking part in the scheme

To be eligible they must have a designated dining or drinking area, or access to one, and have been registered with their local authority since at least 7 July 2020. Businesses that have used the furlough scheme can apply.

To find out where your nearest participating restaurant or pub is you can use A search tool to find venues within a five-mile radius.


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