ICSM News: hospitality sector hit by cost of living crisis as famous names shut up shop such as Sunday Brunch and Copper and Ink

ICSM News: hospitality sector hit by cost of living crisis as famous names shut up shop such as Sunday Brunch and Copper and Ink

By Harry Mottram: Hikes in energy costs and interest rates, inflation hitting double figures and a freeze in house incomes has seen hundreds of restaurants go bust or close up for good. With the new year barely days old Two other high profile restaurants, TV host Simon Rimmer's Greens in Didsbury, Manchester and MasterChef finalist (pictured) Tony Rodd's Copper and Ink, both announced they were closing while The Sunday Brunch host announced his Didsbury outlet, which has been there for 33 years, was closing due to a rent increases and the aforementioned economic factors.

In a survey by UKHospitality, the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA), the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) and Hospitality Ulster the impact of the cost-of-living crisis on customers is also being felt, with more than three-quarters of operators (77%) seeing a decrease in people eating and drinking out and 85% expect this to worsen going forwards. In a bid to stop the rot UK Hospitality CEO Kate Nicholls called for a range of supports for restaurants including a cut on employer National Insurance Contribution reported The Mail Online. 

She said: 'It is always sad to hear of business closures such as these, particularly of such successful and longstanding operations, and it underlines the tough economic environment facing the hospitality industry as we head into 2024. Despite falling inflation, the costs of doing business continue to rise and the sector urgently needs Government support. Capping the hike in business rates for larger sites, cutting employer National Insurance Contributions to help cover wage increases, and a reduced level of VAT for the sector are all crucial. These measures will enable hospitality businesses to not just remain open but to grow, create local jobs and invest in their communities.'   

The Mail Online reported the owner of the Pig and Whistle in Beverley, East Yorkshire, James Allcock announced it would close in its 'current form', despite having a record December, due to staff shortages. While the Kashmiri restaurant Aagrah in Skipton, North Yorkshire announced they were closing down with a notice outside their premises, the Craven Herald reported and down in East Devon The Malthouse was also closing this week. Five restaurants go bust on average every week while the numbers of pubs closing are at record numbers. In the past ICSM has charted the closure of branches of some of the big chains such as Byron Burger, Ask and Zizzi while 33 Bella Italia sites closed last year along with, 31 Cafe Rouge restaurants set to shut.

Ian Carrotte of ICSM said when a restaurant closed it was a tragedy for the owners and the staff, but also for their suppliers who were often left thousands our of pocket. He said the banks and lenders are usually secured creditors while firms such as the printer who produce the menu, posters and flyers, the sign maker who fix up the frontage, the designers of the interiors and suppliers of office equipment are unsecured creditors meaning they don’t usually get paid.



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