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‘Green means go’ - Pub installs traffic lights for toilets to keep punters safe

PUBLISHED: 06:30 03 July 2020 | UPDATED: 15:45 03 July 2020

Landlords Christopher Brown and Cara Green with traffic light system installed for the loos inside The Aviator pub in Scultorpe. Picture: Sonya Duncan

Landlords Christopher Brown and Cara Green with traffic light system installed for the loos inside The Aviator pub in Scultorpe. Picture: Sonya Duncan

Archant 2020

A Norfolk pub has found a novel way to keep punters safe from coronavirus - by installing traffic lights for its toilets.

A traffic light system has been installed for the loos inside The Aviator pub in Scultorpe. It was the idea of pub landlords Christopher Brown and Cara Green.
Byline: Sonya Duncan
(C) Archant 2020A traffic light system has been installed for the loos inside The Aviator pub in Scultorpe. It was the idea of pub landlords Christopher Brown and Cara Green. Byline: Sonya Duncan (C) Archant 2020

At the Sculthorpe Aviator in Fakenham, the green light really means customers can ‘go’ as it lets them know the loos are free.

The pub, which opened in March, has suffered a stalled 
start after it was placed into lockdown just weeks after opening its doors.

With time off, co-owners Cara Green and Christopher Brown began thinking of ways to help the business work with social distancing measure enforcement.

And when Mr Brown hatched the plan of using traffic lights to let people know when the toilets were occupied, Mrs Green was sold.

A traffic light system has been installed for the loos inside The Aviator pub in Scultorpe. It was the idea of pub landlords Christopher Brown and Cara Green.
Byline: Sonya Duncan
(C) Archant 2020A traffic light system has been installed for the loos inside The Aviator pub in Scultorpe. It was the idea of pub landlords Christopher Brown and Cara Green. Byline: Sonya Duncan (C) Archant 2020

“He has got some fantastic ideas and I just try to go along with it,” she said.

She said her partner helped the builders with renovations for the pub and he has used the three-month closure put his idea into action.

The traffic lights were bought online and he created stands made from old scaffolding parts and installed coloured foot pedals, similar to ones found on workshop machines.

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The lights will also have stickers on them, with amber saying stay alert, red is occupied and the green will be vacant.

“We hope that they [customers] will see it as a quirky idea,” Mrs Green said.

“It will also be something that will keep them safe as they don’t have to touch anything, as it is all done with your feet.”

Mrs Green believes that the universal understanding of the traffic lights will mean everyone should follow the rules.

“Everyone knows how a traffic light works, you know red means stop and green means go, everyone coming here will know that, meaning whoever comes in here will know what to do,” she said.

READ MORE: Pub owner slams ‘disastrous’ decision to reopen as he prepares for ‘whole new experience’

The owners said the toilets are the most difficult part of the pub to control as they are out of sight from the staff.

Mrs Brown said: “It is very difficult to monitor people going to the toilet. The traffic lights put our minds at rest, as customers using the toilets with the system means people are not crossing paths.

“Now we can focus more on giving the same experience before lockdown but with the measures in place. We still want to make it feel like a pub and restaurant.”


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