A “large proportion” of hospitality businesses “won’t be able to open” on Monday, despite an easing of lockdown restrictions in England, because they do not have access to sufficient outdoor space, Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UK Hospitality has said.
In England, from tomorrow, restaurants and pubs are allowed to serve food and alcohol to customers sitting outdoors.
Ms Nicholls told BBC Breakfast only two in every five venues would reopen.
“The majority of the industry still has to cling on for five weeks,” said Ms Nicholls.
She said the easing of lockdown on Monday was a “welcome restart” for those businesses that are able to comply with current coronavirus measures.
She suggested each site had invested up to £10,000 in order to make their venues suitable for outdoor hospitality – adding “they still aren’t going to break even… the best they are going to achieve outdoors is 20% of normal revenues”.
“We are keen to make sure this is the last lockdown, so we under the government’s need for caution,” she told the BBC.
“What we need is a clear commitment from the government to stick to those last two dates of the roadmap. Our businesses cannot survive any longer.
“Until we get to 21 June, hospitality won’t be able to be viable.”