LANDLORDS all around the town have put a lot of time and effort into transforming their pubs to keep customers safe today.

The Adver went to The Rat Trap in Stratton to see what sort of changes people can expect to see when they visit their local for the first time in months.

Marc Richardson and his team have bought new fridges, kitchen flooring and freezers during lockdown, pulled the seats and tables out to deep-clean them, set up a one-way loop through the pub and changed the way orders are taken and delivered.

Each table has a disposable paper menu, a small tub of portable hand sanitiser, and a green/red card system to show when customers are ready to order.

The bar is now a no-go zone for punters and has screens set up to protect staff, who put the tray of ordered food and drinks down on to a table which is then moved over to the customers so that they can pick up their meals and drinks themselves.

Every seating area must be reserved in advance.

Takeaway meals which first launched during lockdown are still available to order and can be picked up from a different part of the bar.

Little things like place mats and bottles of sauces have been taken into consideration to make sure they don’t become a risk.

Rotas ensure that touchpoints are cleaned every 30 minutes, that staff wash and sanitise their hands regularly, and that risk assessments are carried out twice-daily.

Tables are sprayed and wiped after each group of customers leaves.

Staff have to fill in a questionnaire and have their temperature checked when they start a shift to ensure they haven’t come down with coronavirus.

Arrow stickers point the way through the pub and are on mats so they can be moved if the planned route does not work as well in practice as expected.

Several sanitation stations have been set up around the pub’ and its toilets to allow people to clean their hands regularly.

The gardens have been split into sections of two benches each, with collection points for empty glasses and marks on the patio indicating how far apart two metres is.

Landlord Marc Richardson said: “We want people to feel safe, relaxed, comfortable and happy when they come here, they need to feel like they’re being looked after.

“It’s taken around a week to get everything ready.

"People are really excited about coming back, they can’t wait, and we’re excited to see people who haven’t been here for a while.

“We have gone above and beyond what’s expected.

"It’s a bit trial-and-error, we won’t know for certain how well it all works until the customers start coming in but we think we’ve covered every angle.

“We’re keeping all the doors open and ensuring that there are as few touch-points as possible, and those that remain will be cleaned regularly.

“This pub has had five-star environmental health rating for around 10 years, which we’re very proud of, so we try to be organised and do everything we can to make people feel secure while they’re here.”