Most UK restaurants, pubs to go bankrupt

LONDON: Almost three quarters of UK pubs and restaurants expect to shut permanently next year following damaging coronavirus restrictions, an industry poll indicated on Thursday.

The British Beer and Pub Association, the British Institute of Innkeeping and UK Hospitality said in a statement that 72 per cent of surveyed businesses “expect to become unviable and close in 2021.”

The survey, conducted by market research company CGA, also showed that pubs and other hospitality businesses want the UK government to provide more support.

CGA polled 446 businesses representing more than 20,000 venues nationwide during November.

“The evidence is here to see of the devastating, long-term impact the government’s restrictions are having on hospitality and pub businesses,” the three trade organisations said in a statement.

“Without a change in approach and more support from government, much of our sector could be gone within a year – that means businesses and jobs lost plus much-loved venues closed forever.”

English pubs temporarily closed their doors on Nov 5 as the country effectively shut down for the second time this year to try to curb spiking Covid-19 infection rates.

The current lockdown has also shuttered restaurants, gyms and non-essential shops and services until Dec 2, with hopes business could resume in time for Christmas.

To help cushion the blow, the government has rolled out a new multi-billion-pound support package by extending its furlough jobs scheme paying the bulk of workers’ wages until the end of March. – AFP

Source: Most UK restaurants, pubs to go bankrupt | New Straits Times

Are rural English pubs a thing of antiquity?

Rural pubsLandlords across the country are stuck between a rock, and a hard place with pubs fastly becoming an endangered species.

Rural English pubs are on a life support machine, and the visitors have long stopped coming by. Much like a vegetative patient, there’s understandable pain and anguish at the idea of letting them go. But deep down, we know we hardly visited them when they were alive. So, there comes a point when it’s best to turn off the machine.

Nicki and Oliver Wolfe have run a 13th Century pub in North Devon since the early ’90s when the village pub truly was the beating heart of the community. Those days, Nicki would come through to their adjoining house after her busy shift in the kitchen smelling of chip fat, and Oliver pulled pint after pint while inhaling the second-hand smoke of others. Continue reading

One in 10 Brits think bacon isn’t essential to a Full English

Brit Breakfast

Brits have lots of bad opinions, but few are as bad as the 1 in 10 people who believe that bacon is not an essential ingredient to a Full English.

God has deserted us

There have been a lot of instances in recent years in which the public have made their feelings known on a variety of topics. Whether it’s been elections across the world, or even Brexit, people across the world are making their opinions known, for better or worse.

Nothing, though, could have prepared us for this. In 2017, YouGov conducted a poll asking the British public what they believe to be an essential ingredient in a Full English.

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The nine amazing pubs that are worth leaving Essex to visit

There are some real gems here

We have plenty of great pubs in Essex but what about if you fancy going a little bit further out for your pint?

There are some fantastic pubs just outside of the county, which are well worth travelling that bit further for.

From beautiful country inns serving delicious food to pretty places by the water, there are some real hidden gems to discover if you’re happy to venture a few miles out for a trip with the family.

Don’t worry though, these aren’t too far away. You could still get a bus or train home in good time.

According to the latest coronavirus lockdown rules, up to six individuals are allowed to meet while following social distancing measures.

Each pub will have adapted their layouts and venues to adhere to the rules, so be sure to visit their website beforehand to check what the changes are.

The Dog and Duck

63 High Street, Linton, Cambridgeshire, CB21 4HS

What’s it like? What an attractive little pub. The Dog and Duck is set in an old inn, painted white with a traditional, thatched roof. It’s lovely in the summer and equally stunning in the winter – if it snows, it’s like a quintessential English village pub. It’s known for its homemade, fresh, local food and it stocks a good range of craft beers and real ales.

What do the reviews say? “What a great little gastro pub.  I enjoyed the scallops and home make chicken and leek pie, all washed down with two different glasses of white wine. This place is a little gem.”

How far is it from Essex? 35 minutes from Great Dunmow.

At the moment, the pub is operating with gazebos, beach huts and tables in the car park and garden and advise visitors to book before they arrive.

Find out more here. Continue reading

My locked-down pub is heartbreaking but it’s time to stop crying into our beers

Jodie Kidd has experienced first hand how tough it has been for pubs to survive the pandemic

THERE was no better feeling at the end of lockdown than being able to sup a cold pint of freshly pulled beer.

After months of enforced isolation we all deserved a drink.

But for many of the nation’s pubs it has not been economically viable to reopen their doors since restrictions ended for them on July 4.

Around a third of English boozers say that social distancing, even when it is just a metre, means they will either lose money or just break even.

Many cherished inns remain closed.

It is a dilemma I have been wrestling with over the summer as I try to figure out the best way to keep our country pub afloat in the age of coronavirus.

While the Half Moon pub in West Sussex, that I co-own, provided a food and wine delivery service during lockdown, we have not yet unlocked the doors to let in customers.

It is heartbreaking to go into this beautiful pub on my weekly check to find it silent, devoid of the laughter, conversations and the celebrations that normally fill its beamed rooms.

The Half Moon pub is normally packed with punters all year round
The Half Moon pub is normally packed with punters all year round

Seeing the grass grow where people should be raising a glass and gleefully saying “cheers” is unbearable.

There is no doubt, though, that we are going to welcome back our loyal locals very soon.

We can’t allow this virus to kill off our pubs, which are at the heart of so many communities.

This is a war for survival, the gloves are off and we must do everything in our power to keep our locals alive while also keeping the nation safe.

The news that the Government is going to restrict social gathering to just six people following a rise in infections will naturally concern a lot of drinkers and licensees.

But the rule of only having six in a group already applied to pubs and restaurants when booking tables so it is not a significant change.

Tax means beer alone is not profitable enough for pubs - so innovation is needed

Tax means beer alone is not profitable enough for pubs – so innovation is neededCredit: Getty Images – Getty

There is also clear evidence that landlords and landladies have been doing a great job when it comes to maintaining a record of which customers have visited.

The health of customers is going to be at the forefront of their minds and no one wants to be responsible for a Covid-19 outbreak.

The six restriction means that for the time being, pubs and restaurants won’t be the venues for the massive parties celebrating birthdays and other key events.

But people can still carry on with that great British tradition of saying: “I’m just popping into the pub for a pint.”

When we go out to do an errand, work or head to the shops, there is no better way of relaxing afterwards than with a freshly pulled pint or a glass of wine.

Just stopping by for a drink and a packet of crisps will help your local to pay the bills.

Licensees are very aware that the Government is not going to be able to provide extensive financial support too much longer.

Both the furlough and Eat Out To Help Out schemes have been a lifeline.

But by keeping those businesses going, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has had something in return.

Research shows that Eat Out To Help Out meant 200,000 staff in the pub and hospitality sector didn’t have to be furloughed, saving the Exchequer £250million.

Rishi Sunak's Eat Out to Help Out scheme gave pubs a much-needed boost

Rishi Sunak’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme gave pubs a much-needed boostCredit: AFP or licensors

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