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Lloyd's of London workers 'angry over zero tolerance office hours alcohol ban'

Employees at one of Britain's oldest financial institutions have reportedly reacted in anger after being told they cannot drink alcohol during office hours.

Lloyd's of London told staff it had introduced a ban on drinking between 9am and 5pm and anyone caught boozing during that time could face the sack for gross misconduct.

Founded in 1688, the insurance market acknowledged the City of London has "historically had a reputation for daytime drinking", but said the demands of the modern world mean alcohol is off the lunch menu.

According to the Evening Standard, incensed staff shared their indignation at the new restriction on an online forum.

One said it made Lloyd's the "PC capital of the world", while another asked: "Will we be asked to go to bed earlier soon?"

An internal memo seen by the paper said the policy, which applies to 800 employees of Lloyd's, but not the brokers or underwriters from other companies based at the market, aligned the firm with many of its competitors.

"The London market historically had a reputation for daytime drinking but that has been changing and Lloyd's has a duty to be a responsible employer, and provide a healthy working environment.

"A zero limit is therefore simpler, more consistent and in line with the modern, global and high performance culture that we want to embrace."

A Lloyd's spokesman told the Standard: "Our employee guidance was recently updated and provided clarification on the Corporation's position on drinking alcohol during the working day, which is prohibited."

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