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A Q&A with Junkyard Golf Club: How the Venue Has Adapted Post-Lockdown

As lockdown restrictions begin to ease, many venues across the city are starting to reopen their doors.

It’s not as simple as switching the closed sign to open and turning on the lights though. Venues are making various changes to ensure they’re Covid-Secure, putting the health and safety of its guests and team as the priority. 

This week, Junkyard Golf Club in Liverpool ONE re-opened. The national leisure destination, home to crazy golf, mad cocktails and bad puns offers three different themed courses all set in a neon-lit adult playground!

Like many others, the venue has spent the past few months changing the way they operate in order to safely welcome back guests, all whilst keeping the vibe in the venues. We asked Managing Director, Sam Jones, to talk us through the process.

Coronavirus has had a major impact on our industry, how has it affected your plans for this year at Junkyard Golf Club?

Our strategic plan was to open either three or four more sites over the next calendar year (as well as Liverpool, Junkyard Golf Club have sites in London, Leeds, Manchester and Oxford). At the moment it’s just not feasible for us to do this so we have stepped back from that plan and will instead consolidate our existing sites this year, with the intention of opening further sites next year, starting with Newcastle.

What changes have you made to the Liverpool venue ahead of re-opening?

Our transition from lockdown to re-opening is essentially two-fold. Firstly, it has been the physical changes we’ve made in the sites to change operation and then it is amending our expectations of what we can actually do under the social distancing rules to fulfil the demand.

Some of those operational changes include hosting guests when they arrive rather than allowing them to make their way to the course when they are ready and there is now an app for ordering drinks to tables. The major changes have been in guest areas where there are now perspex between booths and on the bars and a much higher dedicated cleaning schedule. 

Are there any major challenges you expect to face in the coming months that other venues should be thinking about too?

The challenges we know and can plan for are things such as consumer confidence around safety and spending in a post-covid world and of course, our team safety is paramount. 

After reopening your doors this week, what piece of advice would you give other venues across the city who are also about to reopen?

My biggest piece of advice would be to remember how important team collaboration and communication is. Adapting in these times can be tricky and demanding, but being open to change, taking a compassionate approach and learning to be flexible to change are all key elements to being successful as we grow forward together.  

To find out more about Junkyard Golf Club, visit their website.

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