A Merseyside pub has remodelled itself into a joke at the prime minister’s expense as lockdown restrictions are implemented across the area.
The landlord for The James Atherton pub in New Brighton, the Wirral, said he’d elected to change the name of the establishment to ‘The Three Bellends’ to reflect local dissatisfaction with the virus response from Boris Johnson, his chief aide Dominic Cummings and the health secretary Matt Hancock.
Alongside the new name, signs were also erected - depicting the PM, the minister and the adviser all with bells for hats.
The signage was introduced as pubs across Merseyside were forced to cshut up shop as part of the Government’s new three-tier system of coronavirus restrictions for England.
Daniel Davies, chief executive of pub owner Rockpoint Leisure said the new moniker was “a reflection of what the community thinks about them and their decision making,”
“A couple of days ago I was speaking to some of staff for the second time to say the place was closing.
“The inspiration was looking at their faces, they’ve got their hopes, their dreams, their fears…. and not being able to answer the questions of when it would be open again.”
The hospitality operator added that closing local drinking establishments risked leaving people alone at an isolating time - while adding that he believed there was little evidence for pubs being behind a spike in cases.
“People are lonely, isolated… what they’re doing is just completely wrong,” he added.
“The North to Boris Johnson is Islington… he’s just demolishing not only the economy but whole communities.”
It comes amid anger from officials in the region as the government responds to a surge in cases emanating from the north of the country.
While Merseyside, including the city of Liverpool, are the first to be placed in the most severe of Westminster’s local lockdown categories, other northern regions including Greater Manchester are expected to follow suit.
Mori Sert, who lives around the corner from the pub, said: “I think this response defines the North in a nutshell.
“No matter what hits us, we’ll never lose our spirit and humour.”
Watch: How will England's three-tier local lockdown system work?