UKHospitality is calling on the government to provide immediate relief measures to save the hospitality sector, following the announcement that six million more people in the east and south east of England are to enter Tier 4 on Boxing Day.
This comes after another Covid-19 variant from South Africa was identified in the UK.
Many of the areas being put into Tier 4, which includes a ‘stay at home’ order, border places in the UK which are already in the highest levels of restrictions.
Kate Nicholls, UKHospitality’s chief executive, said: “These urgent restrictive actions require equally urgent accompanying financial support for businesses, many more of which have been flung closer to commercial failure.
“Many more pubs, restaurants, bars, cafes and hotels, having invested so much to make their venues safe, are now looking at indefinite and total loss of trading.”
She added: “They need an immediate message that at the very least, the 5% VAT rate and business rates holiday will remain throughout next year, supported by an urgent package of survival grants, so that they can try to plan strategies to save their businesses.
“The incessant hammering of hospitality businesses must be followed up with an equally exaggerated raft of supports to rescue the sector when the virus is under better control, or many jobs and livelihoods will have been sacrificed for little effect.”