Pubs face “financial devastation” in absence of defined government strategy
Boris Johnson’s coronavirus lockdown update gave restaurants and cafes a reopening date to put in their diaries: 1 July. While far from certain, it was, at least, a date. U.K. pubs had no such luck, renewing fears that the hospitality sector most susceptible to social distancing measures is on the verge of annihilation. Emma McClarkin, chief executive of the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) said “The industry was looking for a glimmer of hope today … but it looks like we have more weeks of uncertainty ahead of us,” reports the Guardian.
With the restaurants and cafes permitted to open 1 July likely to be those with outdoor space, pubs with beer gardens might see some hope ahead. But with many in the sector having labelled those measures “catastrophic,” and foreign secretary Dominic Raab this morning offering both a new date (4 July) and mixed messages (some pubs could open by then, absent criteria as to which ones) there’s no sign of clarity anytime soon. [Guardian]
And in other news...
- Boris Johnson’s coronavirus lockdown update gave restaurants a date to watch, but little else.
- The government has increased its funding of coronavirus food relief by £16 million after criticism of its strategy for feeding vulnerable people. [Gov.uk]
- Food critic William Sitwell’ sits down to publicise his new book and gets rather more than he bargained for. [Grub Street] (Disclosure: Grub Street is owned by Eater’s parent company, Vox Media.)
- Good tweet:
♀️— Nigella Lawson (@Nigella_Lawson) May 10, 2020