Restaurant refuses to serve teacher and Chinese wife over coronavirus

Matthew Moore, 37, and Huang Quan Xiang, 32, had just landed in the UK after flying back from China (Picture: Matthew Moore / SWNS)

A Chinese restaurant refused to serve a British man and his Asian wife over coronavirus fears as they had just landed in the UK.

Matthew Moore, 37, and Huang Quan Xiang, 32, went for dinner
last week less than 48 hours after arriving in the UK from the city of Chengdu,
where they live and work.

Within minutes of arriving, and telling the restaurant owner they had just flown in, the couple say he walked over and ‘rudely’ asked them to leave the premises. His reason, according to Matthew and Xiang, was that they were dangerous because they hadn’t self-isolated for 14 days after arriving in Britain.

Matthew, who works as a teacher, said: ‘The owner was really impolite in the way he walked over and just told us to go away. He just said out loud, “I hope you’ve had two weeks of quarantine, or you’re not allowed to sit in here”.

Matthew and Quan Xiang, 32, said they self-isolated for a month in China before heading to the UK (Picture: Matthew Moore / SWNS)

‘There were other customers there and he spoke really loudly so that everyone could hear, it was really embarrassing.’



The 37-year-old explained he and his wife, who he met after
moving to China five years ago, self-isolated in China for a month before flying

He added that they underwent ‘numerous’ checks at the
airport in China before leaving and more again after arriving at Heathrow.

Matthew said: ‘We told him about the checks and that we had
already been quarantined for a month but he still wanted us to leave.’

The owner of the restaurant, Jacky, claims he was told what
to do by a 111 phone operator, who he rung after the couple arrived at his
Beijing Restaurant in Leyland, Lancashire.

He said: ‘I told them they had to self-quarantine for 14 days coming from China. That’s what 111 told me and that’s how I understand it.

‘There were other guests in the restaurant and they were getting quite concerned. I was nice about it, but I had to say I couldn’t serve them.

‘It’s hard to turn down business. But we have a duty to
protect our guests and our staff and I couldn’t put anyone at risk.’

Despite Jacky’s claim, there is no government suggestion
that people from Chengdu, which is 700 miles from the source of the virus in
Wuhan, need to self-isolate.

Matthew bought Xiang, an office manager, to the UK for the
first time so he could show her where he grew up but said the restaurant incident
has ‘ruined the trip’.



He added: ‘She feels she has been shamed in public and since
it happens she hasn’t wanted to go out.

‘The worst thing you can do in China is to shame someone in
front of other people. That’s the lowest of the low. No one would ever do that
to you in China.’

Matthew and Xiang are staying in Leyland with his parents,
both of whom were with them when they were refused a meal at Beijing

Xiang said: ‘I felt very sorry for my family, they felt
angry. It was a bit unpleasant.’

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