‘Catastrophic figures’ show December trade is set to be disastrous

By Rebecca Weller contact

- Last updated on GMT

Many businesses won't survive until new year: figures from UKHospitality show December is set to be a disaster for pubs (Credit: Getty/ da-kuk)
Many businesses won't survive until new year: figures from UKHospitality show December is set to be a disaster for pubs (Credit: Getty/ da-kuk)

Related tags: ukhospitality, Finance, Pub trade, Christmas, Coronavirus

Pub revenue was down more than 40% over the past weekend with one in five businesses having reported a sales drop of more than 60%, according to UKHospitality.

The new figures from the industry body showed December is set to be a disaster for the hospitality sector, which had much riding on this key period as its hopes for a better 2022 already seem in tatters.

UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “Hospitality operators desperately want to keep their doors open and trade their way to recovery, particularly during the Christmas period, which is not only key for balance sheets but for the communities and people our businesses serve.

Bleak trading figures 

“However, these catastrophic figures clearly show trading levels are now so low that without Government support many businesses will not survive into the New Year and jobs will be lost as cancellations have annihilated cash reserves.”

On top of these bleak trading figures, 88% of operators said they felt negative about the potential of New Year’s Eve trading and four in five operators have already experienced cancellations for bookings in what was already set to be a quiet first quarter next year.

A separate survey, for the Tourism Alliance, showed a third of pubs, bars and restaurants have no cash reserves with 10% of pubs and 14% of restaurants likely to fail, meaning 40% of pubs have been predicted to be at risk without any further Government support.

Sector urgently needs grants

Nicholls added: “The industry urgently needs grants for short-term business survival and an extension to business rates relief and the lower VAT rate to secure longer term survival and planning.

“It is also crucial the Government lets the industry know as soon as possible if measures are to be imposed and what they might be, to allow for as much damage limitation as possible.”

Related topics: Rebuilding the Pub Sector

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