G-A-Y bar in Soho, London. (JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty)
Jeremy Joseph, the owner of G-A-Y nightclubs in London and Manchester, has vowed to keep fighting after the courts refused to hear his legal challenge against the coronavirus curfew.
Joseph launched a legal challenge against the UK government’s 10pm curfew for pubs, clubs, bars and restaurants on October 5. In a statement at the time, Joseph lambasted the government’s curfew as being “detrimental to the hospitality sector”.
Just weeks later, Jospeh has revealed that a court refused his nightclub permission for its legal challenge to proceed. However, he insisted that his fight is not over, and he hopes that they may secure an oral hearing to renew the challenge.
In a statement released Wednesday (October 28), Joseph said a court had refused his nightclub permission to proceed with its case.
G-A-Y owner Jeremy Joseph will continue to fight against the government’s 10pm curfew.
“This decision was made on the papers submitted by G-A-Y and the government,” he said. “The good news is that there is still the chance for our lawyers to argue before a judge why the case should be allowed to go ahead and for a judge to make a different decision.
“This can happen so we have decided not to give up.”
He went on to note that G-A-Y Manchester has since had to close under the government’s “tier system” coronavirus restrictions, and said it was “heartbreaking” that his venues would continue to lose money even after they were allowed to reopen due to the 10pm curfew.
Joseph added that he can see “no good reason” for the 10pm curfew and said it will only serve to put hospitality “out of business”.
This will not be easy, but we are continuing because G-A-Y belies the 10pm curfew is crippling hospitality and is not helping stop the transmission of the virus.
He added: “We still haven’t seen evidence that comes close to justifying the curfew. If the government had something convincing we would have hoped to have seen it by now. It doesn’t.”
The G-A-Y owner confirmed that it will be “game over” if his legal team are not granted permission to proceed with his challenge at an oral hearing.
“This will not be easy, but we are continuing because G-A-Y believes the 10pm curfew is crippling hospitality and is not helping stop the transmission of the virus.”
He said “round one” had been lost, but that the battle was not yet over.
When Joseph launched his legal bid earlier this month, he hit out at the government for “failing to show why the 10pm curfew was put in place” and said they had provided “no scientific evidence” to back it up.
He added that the government was treating the hospitality and nightlife industry as a “scapegoat”, even though venues have “years of operational experience” keeping customers safe and have worked hard to create spaces that are COVID secure.
“Enough is enough,” said Joseph. “Matt Hancock and Boris Johnson have to be made accountable.”