PUBS across Wyre Forest could be left with no choice but to remain closed if Worcestershire is placed into tier two of the government's new stricter tier system.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to reveal which areas will be in what tier later today (Thursday), with the new restrictions coming into effect when the lockdown is lifted on December 2.

Worcestershire had previously been in the lowest tier, meaning residents had to obey the Rule of Six and pubs and restaurants had to close by 10pm, but groups of less than six people from different households could still mix indoors, unlike in the higher tiers.

In tier two of the new stricter system, pubs and restaurants will only be permitted to stay open if they serve “substantial” meals and must only serve alcohol with food.

Speaking this week, the PM said many areas would likely fall into higher tiers first.

Wyre Forest Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) said tier two restrictions could be "devastating" to many local pubs and even leave some at risk of closure.

Branch chairman Nick Rubery said: "Despite significant efforts by our local pubs to offer Covid-secure environments for their customers, they are again being singled out for further punishing restrictions that will undoubtedly threaten their futures.

"Details of which tier our pubs will be placed in has yet to be announced, but the revised extension to tier two will only allow pubs selling substantial meals to remain open.

"This could be devastating to many small wet trade-led community pubs and licensees may be forced to make decisions on the future survival of their businesses.

"These added restrictions, which single out our small pubs, are unsupported by any published evidence and, be in no doubt, they will further threaten the future of our beloved locals."

Maria Gooding, who runs the Black Star in Stourport, said her pub would have to remain closed if the county goes into tier-two restrictions.

"The lockdowns have been horrendous for us because we've had no trade," she said.

"We did open about two weeks after the first lockdown and we were on about 60 per cent of what we were doing before. We managed it really well.

"When they brought in the rules about table service, it dropped us down to 30 per cent. It was horrendous.

"I'm not sure if we're going to be able to reopen this time - it's completely dependent on the tier system.

"If we're put into tier two and people have to buy a substantial meal with their drink, there are no guidelines to say whether people can stay in after they finish eating, how many drinks they're allowed or how we monitor that.

"If we're in tier two, we won't be able to open at all.

"It's been a really stressful time for us. There have been nights where I've just cried due to stress.

"I've been in the trade for 16 years and my husband for 23 years so we know how to run a pub. But we're completely stuck until the guidelines are announced.

"The safety of our customers and our staff has to be our priority."