Calls for measures to 'unshackle' firms ahead of Budget

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Open letter: hospitality businesses call for reformative measures to 'unshackle' sector (Credit: Getty/	matejmo)
Open letter: hospitality businesses call for reformative measures to 'unshackle' sector (Credit: Getty/ matejmo)

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Hundreds of hospitality businesses have signed an open letter urging the Chancellor to implement measures to “unshackle” the sector in the upcoming Spring Budget.

Co-ordinated by UKHospitality (UKH), the letter warned Chancellor Jeremy Hunt ongoing inflation and debt pressures have held the sector back from delivering economic growth and without action, there could be further business failures and job losses.

UKH chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “From some of the largest hospitality businesses in the UK, to local community pubs and hotels, the sector is united in its message to the Chancellor: intervene in the Budget or lose businesses for good.

Make or break 

“No one wants to see that happen. It would mean the loss of jobs and livelihoods, ripping the heartbeat out of communities and robbing the economy of a powerful force for growth, employment and recovery.”

The letter encouraged Hunt to action reformation to licensing and planning, business rates and the apprenticeship levy as well as incentivising economically inactive people into work and tackling debt to boost liquidity.

Nicholls added: “If the Chancellor puts his faith in hospitality, the sector will repay it many times over. We have seen it time and time again, hospitality drives economic growth and creates jobs.

“I hope the collective voice of hospitality is enough to convince the Chancellor his actions will, quite literally, be make or break for many venues across the country.”

Creating prosperity 

The letter was signed by more than 155 firms from all areas of hospitality, including JD Wetherspoon, Mitchell’s & Butler’s, Marston’s, REKOM and St Austell Brewery.

It said: “These measures would unshackle the inflation and debt pressures that are holding back growth in our sector, warding off the spectre of further business failures and job losses.

“In doing so, it would allow us to rapidly deliver growth and investment, bringing many more people back into work and creating prosperity in communities right across the country.

“We urge the Chancellor not to miss this crucial opportunity to unleash the potential of hospitality to deliver the positive economic benefits across the nation.”


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