In this week’s news we get hot under the collar with a focus on the heatwave and the fire risks associated with reflective glass.  We also consider the debate around the proposed ban on the use of nitrates in food and celebrate a pub landlord’s high court win…


Hospitality meltdown as mercury rises

This week we’ve seen record breaking temperatures cause havoc across the UK – from melting runways to a surge in fires.  But if you dreamt of cooling off in a pub garden, then you may have had to think again.  Some pubs and restaurants decided to close their doors due to the extreme weather. We all know working as a chef is hot work at the best of times, but there is no legal right to say it is too hot to work. According to the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), employers have a responsibility to ensure that working conditions are “reasonable” but there’s no specific temperature limit.



Reflective glass is fire risk

Wearing our health & safety and fire safety hats, we thought we’d share the dangers of reflected sunlight.  This was the cause of a devastating fire at popular pub, the Bluebell Inn, in Guarlford, Malvern, when a broken glass bottle in a flower bed ignited a hedge.  The fire then spread to the building, which caused devastating damage.  Thankfully, all of the people inside were safely evacuated. With stronger sunshine – which we’ve experienced in recent days – direct sunlight onto reflective surfaces can cause serious problems. We have a team of fire prevention experts on hand at our sister company, Citation, should you wish to seek advice on how to protect your business, employees and customers.



To nitrate or not to nitrate?

With 90% of bacon sold in the UK containing nitrates, ministers and food scientists are calling for a ban to protect public health. Although the chemical is widely used in bacon, charcuterie and other processed meats, research studies have linked it to the development of bowel, breast and prostate cancers. Professor Chris Elliott, director of the Institute for Global Food Safety at Queen’s University Belfast, explained, “Nitrites are found in many foods and can be perfectly harmless. But when they are used to cure bacon, and that bacon is then cooked and ingested, they produce carcinogenic nitrosamines in the stomach.”  What do you think?



Pub landlord wins £200k for Covid lockdown closures

We know only too well how devastating the lockdown was for those working in hospitality, which is why this story grabbed our attention.  Pub landlord, Simon Bierton, who runs The Red Lion in Sturmer, Essex has been awarded more than £200,000 by the High Court after challenging his insurance company.  Simon spent “two years of sleepless nights” worrying about the future of his business, when his business interruption insurers, Matrix Underwriting Management refused to pay out for loss of earnings.  We hope Simon can now enjoy a restful night’s sleep!