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Budget busting giveaway as UK pub, bar and hotel trade down by half

Britain’s new Chancellor Rishi Sunak did an almost 180 degree spin to open the flood gates on spending and support for the UK economy over fear of Brexit and Covid-19.

The Chancellor froze the duty on wine, beer and spirits, while at the same time removing the need for small bars, pubs and restaurants to pay the much-criticised business rates tax that can be higher than rental income from some businesses. To help support many small business in the hospitality sector the government has committed to pay Statutory Sick Pay in full for two weeks for employees. The payments will be accrued from the first day rather than the normal 4 days before the payments start.

The help is against a backdrop of falling business in the hospitality sector due to the Coronavirus pandemic. According to UKHospitality, hotel occupancy had already fallen by 15% and drinking out is down by 7%. But this is expected to worsen with forward bookings down by 50% over the next 3 months compared to this time last year.