Second lockdown would sound death knell for one in three hospitality businesses

By BigHospitality

- Last updated on GMT

Second lockdown would sound death knell for one in three pubs restaurants hospitality closures

Related tags: coronavirus, Restaurant, Public house, QSR, Casual dining

A second lockdown would sound the death knell for a third of hospitality businesses, according to the findings from a new survey.

The weekly Hospitality Leaders Poll by MCA Insight/HIM has found that 31% of operators say they would not be able to survive a second lockdown, with a further 44% saying they didn’t know.

Respondents to the poll of founders or board level operators across restaurants, pubs and food to go businesses, have voiced their concern for a second lockdown needing to be implemented, with one pub owner saying it would “finish many businesses in our area”.

“I would sooner we remain closed until it is deemed safe to re-open without social distancing than find ourselves opening too soon only to be shut a second time around,” says another pub owner.

Restaurant owners have also expressed concerns about not reopening too early to avoid being forced to close again, with one owner saying: “We must be careful not to open too early, we don't want a second spike as in other countries. We need to open only when it is safe to do so.”

Of the 44% of leaders unsure about whether their business could survive a second spike, some say that it will be dependent on what the Government provided in terms of extra help for businesses.

“Surviving a second lockdown would be decided by government help,” says one respondent.

When it comes to rent, when asked if they planned to make their July rent payment, 42% of businesses say they will not with a further 24% saying they were undecided about whether they would be able to pay it.

“The only thing that can help us at this point is for the government to force landlords to take a fair share of the pain,” says one operator.

“The very minimum this can be must be waving a whole rent quarter, or a 50% reduction on two rent quarters, which equates to the same.”

The ongoing uncertainty and lack of clarity emerging from the Government remains a serious concern for the industry, with numerous respondents citing a lack of clarity of over opening dates and guidelines for hospitality businesses as being a major stumbling block.

“The PM has become a joke, there is no clarity of policy and [the government is] losing public and business support,” says one operator.

The findings of this week’s Hospitality Leaders Poll by MCA Insight/HIM are based on the responses from 380 founders or board level operators across restaurants, pubs and food to go businesses in the UK.

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