A CITY steakhouse has began setting up tents to prepare for their customers to be served outside while they maintain social distancing measures.

Cattle Steakhouse, on Hanover Buildings, Southampton, closed on March 23, but are planning to open the outside sitting area of their restaurant next month.

With hopes to reopen on June 1 - starting with relaunching takeaway services and an outside sitting area - the restaurant is waiting on government guidelines to see how soon they can allow the inside area of the restaurant to open.

Owner Nazim Ahmed, 36, said he wants to encourage businesses and restaurants across the city to reopen.

He said: "I don't see why we should have to wait any longer to open as people are going in shops in close proximity.

"Retail shops will be opening in June so if we keep people outside, separating them in tents, then I don't see why we can't start straight away.

"My staff are going crazy at home and I'm having trouble sleeping due to anxiety and stress levels. It isn't just affecting the economy."

Nazim, who lives in London but sometimes travels to the restaurant in Southampton, said he plans for staff to serve customers while keeping each table in their own separated area from other diners.

Staff working for Cattle Steakhouse will be going back to work in one week and will be getting prepared ahead of their opening on June 1.

He added: "Businesses around world are opening, in Germany people are sitting in cafes, and in Amsterdam, they are putting customers outside in glass houses, which is what gave me the idea to set up tents.

"They government are letting people into garden centres and shops, even in the supermarket people come up right near me to get a product. But people are more weary now and are getting bored of being stuck at home, they miss the social side.

"If I could reopen now, I would do it in a heartbeat but I've got to think of the implications."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the UK that some hospitality businesses could open in phase three of the government’s reopening plan, on July 4.

Currently, several restaurants have reopened for takeaway and delivery services, such as 7 Bone and Nandos.

As previously reported by the Daily Echo, in 2018 the restaurant was given the green light to continue serving customers until 1am, a three hour increase from its original opening hours.