UKHospitality CEO has just commented on today’s figures, showing that 7,000 pubs have closed in the past decade.
Kate Nicholls (pictured) said: “These figures are truly shocking but will come as no surprise to many in the industry. The overwhelming burden of taxation – particularly business rates - and red tape will have proved too much for many licensees.
“The pandemic intensified the distress that many business owners were facing, and in many cases business support was not enough to keep them afloat. While these are pub closures, there has been similar – sometimes worse - levels of closure across restaurants, nightclubs and broader hospitality.
“The current economic crisis increases the chances of further decline, with soaring costs in energy, food and drink, a higher VAT rate, falling consumer confidence and an acute labour shortage. For businesses struggling to repay Covid-related debt this could simply be too much.'
Kate concluded, “We need the Government to take urgent steps to remove barriers to growth, help to tackle the cost crisis we’re facing and support more people into work and training. Without this help, we could see thousands more pubs lost from their communities in the next few years.”