Greggs to close all its UK stores within hours due to coronavirus crisis

Greggs will close its entire store estate in the UK from the end of business on Tuesday, it has announced.

The bakery chain famed for its sausage rolls said operating a takeaway service was not enough to maintain social distancing.

It said in a statement that the decision to close all its branches was "difficult" but that "it's clear we need to go further".

The chain added that its colleagues will continue to be support "with full contract hours for as long as we are able".

It said: "We've been doing everything we can to keep our shops open and everyone safe but it has become clear that to help us all maintain social distance we need to go further and close all of our shops completely.

"So, we have made the difficult decision to close all of our shops on Tuesday 24th March.

"First and foremost, thank you to our amazing colleagues for the hard work they have been putting in every day.

"They live and breathe the Greggs spirit, and we couldn't have got through these challenging times without their unwavering positivity and cooperation.

"While we are closed, we will continue supporting our colleagues with full contract hours for as long as we are able although we will need to keep this under review as the situation develops.

"Whilst our shops will be temporarily closed, our dedication to our communities won't stop.

"We'll continue to provide support to our local communities by distributing any remaining unsold food and offering support for those in hardship through the Greggs Foundation.

"To our customers, thank you for your ongoing support – we know these are difficult and unsettling times, and through our community work we hope to be able to continue serving you, and your friends and families in some way.

"Last but by no means least, a special thank you to the key workers at the front line of this crisis and all those who continue to work tirelessly to reduce the spread of the virus."

The news of Greggs' closure comes just moments after major UK restaurant chain Wagamama's followed McDonald's suit in shutting all its restaurants.

They have joined a growing list of major UK retailers and eateries closing due to the Covid-19 crisis.

It is reported a full-scale lockdown could soon be imposed on the nation as thousands of Brits defy social distancing orders.

Daily Star Online has this afternoon published a full list of shops and restaurants in the UK closing due to coronavirus.

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