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Restaurant chain Hawksmoor is planning to open all its restaurants across Britain, except the one in Guildhall.
Hawksmoor has a total of 10 restaurants in London, Manchester and Edinburgh, and plans to stay open on the bank holiday for the funeral.
The restaurant in Guildhall, however, will close as it always shuts on public holidays.
Hawksmoor’s move has been highly criticised but the restaurant explained its decision to the angry customers on social media.
Hawksmoor said on social media: “If you want to shut, so you/your staff/customers can grieve or take part in an important national moment, then you should.
What do you think? Join the debate in the comments section below
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“Just try not to make it sound like you are ‘showing respect for the Queen’ and implying that those doing differently are not.
“If you want to open, and feel staff need to work and people need to eat or drink, then you should.
“Just try not to make it sound like you are doing so in order for your customers to ‘pay their respects to the Queen’ and implying that those doing differently are not…”
They continued: “Grief, even national grief, is personal. There are few ‘right’ ways of grieving, and few established ‘correct’ ways of being respectful. The Government have specifically issued guidance saying it’s your choice.
“Respect for the Queen (to me) suggests tolerance to how others feel or behave, however they grieve (even ‘whether’ they grieve).
“No one should feel that their quiet, respectful decisions are being thrown out for public judgement on social media. There is no ‘right’ answer.”
Many social media users took to the comments section to share their frustration with user Andrew saying: “Respect your decision to stay open for the Queen’s funeral. Hope you’ll respect our decision to boycott your business.”
Another social media user, @kerrymumandwife, commented: “Poor decision… can’t even close for lunch!!”
@petervdg01 added: “The bottom line is that you can pay your respects, but you still need to eat.”
Supermarkets Sainsbury’s and Tesco, as well as John Lewis and Harrods, announced they will remain closed on Monday 19.
A spokesman for Sainsbury’s said the decision is “in honour of Her Majesty and so our colleagues can pay their respects”.
The chief operating officer of The John Lewis Partnership, Andrew Murphy, said closing down is “a mark of respect, and because we believe this is the right thing to do for our partners and customers”.
Although there is no obligation for restaurants, pubs and stores to close on the bank holiday, most establishments are opting to shut down to pay their respects.
Pub chain Greene King, however, announced they will remain open on Monday “for communities to gather to mourn and reflect together on the life of the Queen”.
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