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McDonald's trials opening restaurants across UK and Ireland amid pandemic

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A large queue of cars leading into a McDonald’s restaurant on Belfast’s Shore Road after the company announced it would be closing all its food outlets due to the coronavirus pandemic

A large queue of cars leading into a McDonald’s restaurant on Belfast’s Shore Road after the company announced it would be closing all its food outlets due to the coronavirus pandemic

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

A large queue of cars leading into a McDonald’s restaurant on Belfast’s Shore Road after the company announced it would be closing all its food outlets due to the coronavirus pandemic

Fast food giant McDonald’s could begin opening its restaurants again after shutting its doors amid the coronavirus pandemic last month.

The company say it’s eyeing up a “potential and limited” reopening of some of its locations across the UK and Ireland.

It’s testing ways to incorporate social distancing for staff, using PPE and reducing capacity.

“In March, we took the decision to temporarily close our restaurants in the UK and Ireland for the safety of our people and customers,” Paul Pomroy, McDonald’s chief executive, UK and Ireland, said.

“Recently, we began working through a potential and limited reopening. We have been listening to our employees and customers as well as engaging with government and trade bodies to help ensure we do this responsibly, when the time is right.

“Restarting our business is not an easy task even when reopening in a limited capacity. We have set ourselves some key criteria for reopening, all of which take time – first and foremost ensuring the wellbeing of our people and creating the right environment for them to return to work; secondly ensuring we have enough supply of fresh produce; and finally working in-step with government guidelines to ensure the safety of our customers.

“This week we are carrying out some operational tests to explore what our reopening might look like; the restaurant where these tests take place will remain closed to the public.

"These tests will include exploring social distancing measures for our crew, PPE options and opening in a limited capacity. For now we remain closed, and will only reopen when we are absolutely confident we can have the right measures in place to ensure everyone’s wellbeing.”