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Coronavirus: McDonald's, which has a Newark store, is to close all UK branches from 7pm today

There were queues forming at McDonald's this lunchtime after the chain announced all of its UK stores, including drive-thrus, would shut from 7pm for the forseeable future.

Those desperate for a last Big Mac and fries included a police officer and an ambulance crew that sadly had to leave the queue when an emergency call came in.

Such was the weight of traffic, a member of staff was out marshalling vehicles. Staff were managing the demand, however.

Queues at McDonald's for last day of trading (32224238)
Queues at McDonald's for last day of trading (32224238)

The fast food chain said it took the difficult decision to shut its branches over coronavirus fears.

All McDonald's stores will be closed today (Monday) from 7pm.

The statement read: "This is not a decision we are taking lightly but one made with the well-being and safety of our employees in mind as well as in the best interests of our customers.

"We will work with local community groups to responsibly distribute food and drink from our restaurants in the coming days.

"Thank you to our brilliant employees for their hard work during this incredibly challenging time. We look forward to seeing you all again as soon as it's safe to reopen."

McDonald's had been operating as a takeaway, banning customers from dining inside its outlets before they shut up shop.

Other chains to make the closure decision include Nandos, John Lewis and Costa Coffee which has a branch on Stodman Street, Newark.

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