Starling Covid-19 Info
Following on from the Covid-19 lockdown 3 closure, we wanted to clearly communicate what we’re doing at Starling and why we’re doing it. We’re hoping that by sharing this on our website as well as our Covid-19 risk assessment (click here to view), it gives a clear idea of what to expect prior to visiting when Starling reopens and what has changed a bit from our usual routines. This in turn will hopefully reassure you, our customers, that we are following the guidance and have a clear plan to keep customers and staff as safe and comfortable as possible in these strange times.
The measures we have put in place will undoubtedly make for a slower and less efficient service, as we bed these new procedures in over the coming weeks and maintain them throughout this period of socially distanced operation. Please bear with us, be patient and do your best to comply with the changes we have had to put in place.
Here are the key changes:
- We will be operating a strictly table service only policy for all customers drinking/dining in with us. A member of the team will help you find a table if required and a member of staff will serve you at your table for the entirety of your visit from taking an order to taking payment. Please don’t go up to the bar for anything as it will all be done at your table. The only exception is those wanting food or drinks to take away and a member of staff will take your order at the bar and direct you from there to a waiting area in the front window.
- We are going card payments only. Our new card machines will be configured to take tip payments too if you’ve had great service from the team during your visit. Any tips will be split fairly across the whole team on top of their pay and are not used to make up any statutory pay rate levels.
- In lockdown 1 we have invested in an optional online table booking system. We would encourage people to use this for FOOD BOOKINGS ONLY to give them the security of knowing they have a space reserved, but this won’t be in any way mandatory as we appreciate it doesn’t suit everyone which is why tables in the bar and outside the nest are not bookable.
- We have provided a hand sanitiser point at the entrance door, please sanitise your hands on the way in. In between groups using a table, our staff will be cleaning and sanitising all relevant touchpoints on tables, chairs, menus, etc using a checklist which we have devised. If you are arriving, please be patient with your server who may yet need to sanitise the table for you. We will also be doing the same to a regular roster for other communal use areas such as doors, stairs and toilets. We have removed some of our usual facilities, such as self service water points, to eliminate the chance of virus transmission.
- We are limiting it to a maximum of 8 people in a single group to enable us to limit the risk and best manage the customer space we have. Government guidelines state that a single group sharing a table indoors is limited to 6 people or a maximum of 2 households (including their supporting bubble). This also means we are unable to take any event bookings or room hire of large groups at this time. We are running our Thursday night quiz as a socially distanced fully seated event.
- Government guidelines have asked hospitality businesses that are reopening to support NHS Test and trace for ALL customers over 16 years of age. So we will be asking all customers for their contact details as part of our new service procedure. We will be storing this data securely on our table booking software from Opentable. If you would prefer you can use the Test & Trace QR code via their app or good old pen and paper instead.
- In line with government guidelines our front of house staff will be required to wear face masks. All customers must also wear face masks in our within our premises when not seated at their table.
- We have set out our tables and chairs to allow for the 2m or 1 metre plus mitigation In customer areas our mitigation is that customers on adjacent tables will always be back to back. We have removed tables to allow for wide transit areas in each room which have guidance arrows on the floor. Please do not attempt to move tables around yourself as this may cause a breach of the 1m+ rule. Instead please ask the member of staff working in that area.
- We have made some areas such as our staircases “single file only” as per floor markings as we cannot adapt or increase the space we have in these areas in any way. Our toilets are also tight so please follow signage and directional arrows, observe max entry numbers and queuing floor markings. These are different for ladies and gents. Please use your common sense and show respect for other customers and our staff.
- Unfortunately we have had to remove the play kitchen, books and toys from the barn whilst the restrictions are in place. We also ask parents to ensure their children remain seated at their table throughout their visit and are not allowed to run around unaccompanied at any time. We will still have limited space under the main staircase to store buggies and push chairs as usual.
- We will continue to welcome customers with dogs in the ground floor bar area only, but please be aware that the seating capacity in this area has had to be significantly reduced.