Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region and Joe Anderson OBE, Mayor of Liverpool, alongside the leaders of the city region’s five local authorities issued a statement after discussions with the Government.
They said the Government had decided to close pubs and bars in their region.
“These measures they feel will help stop the spread of Covid-19, reduce the levels of infection and relieve pressure on our hospitals and NHS,” they said.
Closures could affect some 1,173 pubs across the Liverpool City Region, Halton and Warrington, according to real estate adviser, Altus Group.
The city leaders said they did not think the Chancellor’s freshly announced furlough system was “adequate” for businesses to be under the new measures.
The Government will pay pub staff who cannot work two thirds (67%) of their salaries up to £2,100 a month.
Hospitality businesses in particular “will be damaged and many will suffer long term damage or close for good," the city leaders said.
“Government made it very, very clear they would not shift and improve the scheme,” the statement added.
They said they had not yet reached an agreement on an economic support package but had agreed to stay in dialogue with Government to “establish a wider, appropriate and mutually agreeable financial support package”.
“If pubs, bars and other hospitality and leisure businesses are forced to close, there must be appropriate support for them and their staff,” the statement said.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to outline a three-tiered system of restrictions to MPs later today (Monday 12 October) and then give a speech to the public this evening.
It is thought the worst-affected areas of the country, where infection rates have surpassed a certain number of the population, will face pub closures in the strictest tier.
The tier below that is expected to impose restrictions on socialising between households, similar to the measures faced by large parts of the north of England already.