A pilot rating system assessing whether businesses are compliant with Covid-19 safety measures has been launched in Southwark.  

The accreditation scheme, led by City of London, and also being piloted in Camden and Southwark, aims to “promote public confidence in London’s pubs, restaurants, cafes and shops”. 

By law, businesses must already carry out a Covid-19 risk assessment. 

The pilot, the first scheme of its kind launched by local government, will involve an independent review by environmental health officers. 

They will look at businesses’ Covid-19 risk assessment and carry out a site visit to look at social distancing measures, customer track and trace, and cleanliness. 

Thirty businesses from each local authority area are being invited to participate in the scheme – they will be given a simple pass or fail by the councils’ environmental health teams. 

Those who fail will still have the opportunity to put into place remedial measures and be re-assessed. 

A sticker will be awarded to businesses to display on their premises and the result will be posted on each of the local authority websites. 

The pilot scheme will run throughout September and October. If successful, the initiative could be rolled out across London. 

Councillor Peter John, Leader of Southwark Council, said: “Local authorities and businesses’ response to Covid-19 is an evolving situation, and as such, safety can never be completely guaranteed.  

“However, it’s very important that we aim to introduce consistency in how we look at the changing regulations and risk assessments.  

“This new scheme offers that consistent approach and looks at a simple checklist of measures that businesses can carry out, which follow the Government’s guidelines on keeping people safe.”