Hospitality site numbers up 10,650 against pre-Covid

By Rebecca Weller contact

- Last updated on GMT

Hospitality saw 10,650 more businesses in 2021 vs March 2019: Research reflects 'resilience and excellence' of the sector (Credit: Getty/glegorly)
Hospitality saw 10,650 more businesses in 2021 vs March 2019: Research reflects 'resilience and excellence' of the sector (Credit: Getty/glegorly)

Related tags: Property, Finance, Coronavirus

There were 10,650 more food and drink businesses across the hospitality sector in 2021 than in March 2019 and 3,650 more when compared with March 2020, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) official UK Business Count.

The data, analysed by British hospitality software start-ups Stampede and Storekit, showed the sector had been resilient amid recent adversity as there were more UK hospitality businesses than before the start of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Stampede founder and CEO Patrick Clover said: “We analysed the data expecting the worst and would’ve been buoyed just to see hospitality business numbers stay the same.

“To see the numbers, go up since Covid first struck is phenomenal, it’s a great reflection of the resilience and excellence we see every day in the UK hospitality sector.

Precarious situation 

“Unfortunately, we worked through another deeply precarious situation as Covid case numbers continued to rise, while the Government did little to support hospitality businesses during the festive season.”

In 2019, Stampede research revealed the number of pubs and bars in the UK had increased for the first time in a decade, while the wider hospitality sector was also in good shape.

There are now more registered hospitality businesses in the UK today than in March 2019 or March 2020, according to ONS data based on Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) codes 5601, 5602, 5603, 56210, 56290, 56301, 56302, which cover restaurants, takeaways, cafes, mobile food stands, catering businesses, clubs, pubs, and bars registered to Companies House. 

 

Industry

2010

2015

2019

2020

2021

56101 : Licensed restaurants

27,885

31,950

35,105

35,590

36,035

56102 : Unlicensed restaurants and cafes

15,365

24,480

30,135

31,110

32,375

56103 : Take away food shops and mobile food stands

29,330

36,855

40,170

40,930

43,235

56210 : Event catering activities

21,635

12,300

15,535

17,420

19,525

56290 : Other food service activities

2,790

11,100

13,650

16,985

15,780

56301 : Licensed clubs

10,040

8,370

7,420

7,230

6,985

56302 : Public houses and bars

44,680

40,360

39,145

38,885

37,865

Column Total

151,725

165,420

181,150

188,150

191,800

 

In less positive news, there was a decline in the number of UK pubs, bars, and clubs between 2019 to 2020 and 2020 to 2021.

This is the continuation of a decade long downward trend, despite a small surge in 2019, but the steep net loss of 1,300 pubs between 2019 and 2021 have been noticeable, drinks-focused businesses such as pubs, bars and clubs suffered more from covid restrictions than restaurants. 

Tough few months 

Storekit CEO Christophe Delacroix said: “This research shows how much the sector has changed and matured over the last two years, especially in regard to the adoption of technology.

“I have no doubt the ways businesses operated safely during the pandemic would not have been possible 10-15 years ago when the outcome of the pandemic could’ve been a lot bleaker for the sector. 

“That being said, with continued uncertainty, home-working and low footfall there's no denying the industry is facing an extremely tough few months.”

Related topics: Rebuilding the Pub Sector

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