As pubs and restaurants with outdoor space prepare to reopen on April 12 as coronavirus restrictions are eased, many eateries are now taking bookings, including those on the rooftop terrace at Oxford’s Westgate Centre.

Restaurants and bars at the centre now taking bookings for April and May include Victors, Pho, The Breakfast Club, Dirty Bones, Mowgli and The Alchemist.

The rooftop terrace at Westgate Oxford Picture: Nick Caville

While some will reopen from April 12, others have scheduled in May for their opening.

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The Westgate Centre website says: "We've all been given a boost by the news of bars and restaurants returning in time for summer!

With outdoor drinks in April and indoor dining in May, getting your bookings in ASAP will make sure you don't miss out."

From April 12 pubs and restaurants can serve drinkers and diners outside and from May 17 customers will be allowed inside, under the Government's current timetable for easing coronavirus restrictions.

Diners inside The Breakfast Club at Westgate

Diners inside The Breakfast Club at Westgate

If the weather is good restaurants at the rooftop terrace are likely to be busy.

One of Westgate's restaurants, Pizza Pilgrims, is homegrown - it is run by Thom and James Elliot who are from Oxfordshire.

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The pizzeria opened at the Westgate Centre in 2017.

It was founded by the Elliot brothers who went to boarding school Radley College, the pizzeria first opened in London.

Staff at Pizza Pilgrims

Staff at Pizza Pilgrims

Using the opportunity of the new Westgate Centre opening, the brothers decided to come back to Oxford and open an eatery on their old stomping ground.

Thom said at the time: "This is the biggest project we’ve undertaken outside of London."

The name was chosen after the brothers realised they knew little about pizza and so decided to make a six-week ‘pilgrimage’ to Italy.

Thom and James Ellipt of Pizza Pilgrims

Thom and James Ellipt of Pizza Pilgrims

Last year they joined a business venture called Restaurant Kits to keep bringing in revenue when restaurants were closed during lockdowns.

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The e-commerce site delivers signature dish and drink kits from the UK’s most loved independent restaurants, includes Pizza Pilgrims.

Pizza Pilgrims were involved in the launch of Restaurant Kits in lockdown in 2020

Pizza Pilgrims were involved in the launch of Restaurant Kits in lockdown in 2020

The platform was the brainchild of Scottish restaurateurs, and Mac & Wild co-founders, Andy Waugh and Calum Mackinnon along with Edward Alun-Jones, the hospitality technology entrepreneur behind Top City Bites and Orderu, the digital ordering system.