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lockdown frustration Kerry chef Paul Treyvaud says he is 'prepared to be arrested' as he defends decision to reopen restaurant in July

Paul Treyvaud, owner of Treyvaud’s Restaurant, said that if the government does not lift Covid-19 restrictions by July, he’ll be opening back up anyway.

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Paul Treyvaud

Paul Treyvaud

Paul Treyvaud

A restaurant owner in Kerry has defended his decision to reopen by July 1, saying the Government’s communication on lifting restrictions has been “appalling”.

Paul Treyvaud, owner of Treyvaud’s Restaurant, said that if Covid-19 restrictions are not lifted by July, he will be opening back up anyway.

“Particularly in rural Ireland, if we’re not open for the first of July, and if we don’t get to trade for July and August - it doesn’t matter if they let us open in October, November, December - there’s going to be nobody in Kerry,” he told Newstalk Breakfast this morning.

“And we’re going to lose anywhere from 60 to 80pc of our businesses if we are not open by the first of July.”

However, Mr Treyvaud said he did recognise that the current levels of Covid-19 in the country are too high to reopen right now.

“I don’t believe that we can open now, I believe community transmission is still way too high; I don’t think it’s safe to open up businesses now. However, I’m giving you four months guys to get your act in gear here,” he said.

Mr Treyvaurd first announced his plans to reopen on Twitter, saying that he’s “done everything I’ve been told to do”.

“55k came in from the uk with that variant, now over 1500 from Brazil,” he said. “The problem is no longer us. It’s an incompetent government.”

“At least in my head I now have a date and it’s put everything at ease. I am prepared to be arrested if need be. I no longer care.”

“I’m not a conspiracy nut job so don’t bother telling me to open up now. I’ve done the maths and if I’m not open by then, everything is gone.”

He added that: “I’m not telling any business that has been forced to shut to do the same. But all I’ll say is that there is strength in numbers.”

“If this doesn’t force a government to sort this shit out once and for all, I give up. I’d rather fight my own battles than take another cent of state aid.”

The tweet was read by over two million people, with Independent TD Michael Healy-Rae also providing his perspective on the situation.

“I’m no Master Chef but some of you may recall that I did put on an apron some time back on ‘The Restaurant’,” he said. “However, I have to weigh in when somebody questions the intellect of our fine Kerry people and refers to one of the finest restaurants in the tourism capital of the world as a ‘rural restaurant’. Keep up the good work Paul Treyvaud you have them all well rattled now.”

Speaking again on Newstalk, Mr Treyvaud said that what’s particularly “frightening” is how he’s been better able to read the room than the government.

“[I] understand the mentality of the people of Ireland more than an entire political system.”

“I’m not going to be an anti-vaxxer, I don’t deny Covid exists, we have lost an immediate loved one in our family to Covid,” he added.


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