In a trading update published yesterday (21 July), the landlord said it had 'provided support to retail and hospitality customers experiencing cash flow pressures, with rental agreements being adjusted on a case by case basis to include deferrals and turnover-linked arrangements where appropriate'.
It added that the company is 'confident in the long-term resilience, attractiveness of and prospects for prime central London', noting that additional streets around the Covent Garden Piazza have been pedestrianised in partnership with Westminster Council, 'allowing for greater freedom of movement and increased al fresco dining across the estate'.
The news follows reports in The Sunday Times last weekend that the Crown Estate, which owns large portions of the West End, had 'offered to share the pain of plunging footfall with its tenant'.
In one letter, seen by the paper, the group asked for 9% of turnover, or a percentage of what it would normally receive in quarterly rents, on a scale starting at 0% for the current period and rising to 75% by next March.
“For a number of our restaurant operators who are facing particular challenges at this time, we have offered the option to move to more of a turnover-based structure for the coming period, on a case by case basis, as part of the safe and sustainable reopening of the West End,” said James Cooksey, director of the Crown Estate’s central London portfolio.