Fears more than three-quarters of night-time economy will be out of business by Christmas

30 November 2020 by
Fears more than three-quarters of night-time economy will be out of business by Christmas

The new tier restrictions in England will put 75.6% of night-time economy and hospitality companies out of business by Christmas, according to a survey by the Night-Time Industries Association (NTIA) and Sprout CRM.

The survey of more than 400 businesses also found 73% had already made redundancies since the start of the pandemic, with 65% making over 40% of their workforce redundant.

Almost three-quarters (74.4%) of the businesses surveyed were commercial tenants, with 77.6% of them with over two quarters in rent arrears.

Last week, the government revealed England's latest strategy to combat Covid-19 over the winter period. It announced that the majority of England, including London and Liverpool, will enter Tier 2 once lockdown eases this week, while Cornwall, the Isle of Wight and the Isles of Scilly will be the only areas to go into Tier 1.

Hospitality businesses in areas including Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle, Bristol, Nottingham, Leicester and Lancashire will have to remain closed as they are placed into Tier 3.

In the tighter tier system the rule of six applies both indoors and outdoors in Tier 1. In Tier 2 households are not allowed to mix indoors and alcohol can only be served as part of a substantial meal, while all forms of hospitality have to close in Tier 3, except for delivery or takeaway.

"This announcement by the government has led us to believe that they are intentionally aiming to collapse our sector," said Michael Kill, chief executive of the NTIA.

"Every town and city across the UK stands to lose valued and much loved venues. This will be another stab in the heart of our town and city centres. We stand to lose the cultural institutions and amazing workforce of professionals that the UK are renowned for globally. Our clubs, bars, venues, security, freelancers, staff, managers, DJs and many more will lose their livelihoods and continue to suffer financial hardship without government intervention"

He added: "I make a direct appeal to the prime minister – ‘Mr Johnson, what are you doing to save the lives and livelihoods of the many businesses and workers within the night time economy, businesses that have been closed since March and are continuing to suffer? They have staff and freelancers that will lose their jobs irrespective of furlough because the businesses won't survive. What do you say to that prime minister, I hope you are sleeping well at night because thousands within our sector are struggling to sleep, in fear of their future.'"

Photo: Shutterstock

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