McDonald’s says it has taken the “difficult decision” to close all its restaurants in Britain and Ireland by 7pm on Monday (local time) at the latest.
“This is not a decision we are taking lightly, but one made with the wellbeing and safety of our employees in mind as well as in the best interests of our customers,” the company said.
“We will work with local community groups to responsibly distribute food and drink from our restaurants in the coming days.
“Thank you to our brilliant employees for their hard work during this incredibly challenging time. We look forward to seeing you all again as soon as it is safe for us to reopen.”
The move comes just days after the British government ordered the country’s restaurants, pubs and bars to close. In a move similar to Sunday’s announcement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison for Australia, British restaurants and cafes were told they could remain open for takeaways and home deliveries.
British PM Boris Johnson had appealed for the country to take the restrictions imposed due to the coronavirus outbreak seriously “to protect the NHS and save lives”. He said he would the measures “each month”.
In Ireland, pubs and bars were told to close from last Sunday.