Paul Pomroy, Chief Executive Officer of McDonald’s UK & Ireland, said that – over the last 24 hours – it had become clear that maintaining safe social distancing whilst operating busy takeaway and Drive Thru restaurants was increasingly difficult.
Therefore every restaurant will be closed by 7pm today (Monday, March 23).
Mr Pomroy said: “We have not taken this decision lightly and know that our restaurants have been playing an important role in the community providing hundreds of thousands of free drinks to frontline health and social workers and emergency services personnel.
“But I have been clear throughout this that we would only continue to operate whilst it was safe for our people and together with our franchisees, we feel now is the time to make this decision to temporarily close.
“We will be working closely with community groups across the UK and Ireland to distribute food from our restaurants to those most in need, and ahead of closing tomorrow evening, will ensure frontline health workers and emergency services personnel do not have to pay for any food or drink in our restaurants on sight of their work pass.”
He thanked all 135,000 employees at McDonald’s for adapting to circumstances over the last few weeks.