The shock announcement yesterday by the Prime Minister to impose Tier 4 restrictions on London and SE England has seen business leaders call for new additional support from The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak.
Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales followed the PM’s move with similar restrictions imposed by the devolved Governments.
The speed of the imposition of changes was also a shock, prompting an avalanche of people to descend on London railway stations eager to escape the capital before midnight.
As much of the UK is now under the severest of restrictions and travel similarly limited, hospitality once again is at the forefront of the immediate impact from both.
We spoke today with hotelier Harry Murray MBE, Chairman of Lucknam Park Hotel on the affect he and his colleagues are left to deal with today.
Murray was angry, not with the decision if it saves lives, but the timing just 5 days before Christmas telling us: “When I saw the announcement on television yesterday it was chilling, I knew another blow for hospitality was imminent.
“Today as a direct consequence of the Prime Minister’s announcement we (Lucknam Park) have moved from being 100% fully booked through the Christmas and New Year period to 20%, in less than 24 hours.
“Lucknam Park Hotel, our spa, and our restaurants have all invested heavily in ensuring we follow every Covid-19 guideline to the letter. Guests are safer with us than if they stay at home, I know that for a fact.
“The whole of hospitality, whatever tier applies to a business’s location 1,2,3 or 4 is now for all intents and purposes closed until further notice. As the Government has imposed these changes, they need to now also step up and support their imposition economically. We cannot be forced into a situation where actions we are not in any way responsible for ruin good businesses.
“I call on Government to now match their actions with economic pragmatism to ensure hospitality prevails.”
The sheer pain of the last 24 hours was all too evident when we spoke with Murray, his concerns however were not for himself but his colleagues at Lucknam Park, and the wider hospitality family across the UK. Many who are exhausted & suffering mental & physical health issues due to the ongoing uncertainty.
Pressure is mounting today on Government from many business groups including the CBI and the Institute of Directors for increased support for business.
Let’s all hope that voices mount further, Government listens carefully, and invests in a recovery before it is too late.
Hospitality & Catering News: Mounting pressure from business leaders on Government for increased economic support. – 20 December 2020 – Mounting pressure from business leaders on Government for increased economic support.
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