McDonald's has said it will reopen its first UK restaurants for delivery on May 13 after shutting all its Irish and UK sites due to the coronavirus lockdown.

It said it will reopen 15 restaurants in the UK for delivery only, with the locations of these restaurants being announced next week.

The fast-food chain has spent this week testing its operations behind closed doors in preparation.

McDonalds decided in March to temporarily close its Irish and UK restaurants for the safety of its employees and customers, but it recently began working through potential and limited reopenings.

It said its outlets, when they re-open, will have much smaller teams and as a result it will be returning with a limited menu. It said this will support social distancing in its kitchens.

To further reduce the complexities in its kitchens at menu changeover, it will also temporarily stop serving breakfast. 

To keep its staff safe, McDonalds said it will introduce the use of perspex screens and floor markings will be introduced in specific areas. 

It also plans to provide additional protective equipment including non-medical grade face masks and it will use contactless thermometers with the temperatures of staff taken on arrival at work for every shift.

The fast food chain also said it will introduce social distancing measures for all of its delivery and service partners.

"When we return it will be different as we all adjust to this new normal," commented Paul Pomroy, chief executive at McDonald's UK and Ireland.

"Slowly, but safely we will return to towns and cities across the UK and Ireland and thank you for your continued support as we work through this crisis," he added.