‘Perfect storm’ for music venues, pubs, and hospitality venues without support, Sheffield MP warns

Louise Haigh has warned a ‘perfect storm’ is brewing for local music and hospitality venues after the decision to delay the June 21 re-opening.

By David Walsh
Tuesday, 15th June 2021, 2:38 pm

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has pushed back ‘Freedom Day,’ when the final lockdown restrictions are lifted, four weeks to July 19.

But Ms Haigh, MP for Heeley, said he he was silent on additional support for businesses despite huge upcoming costs including:

Quarterly rent is due on June 23

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Louise Haigh, Labour MP for Sheffield Heeley.

A ban on commercial rent evictions ends on June 30.

Employers must start contributing 10 per cent to furlough costs from July 1.

100 per cent business rates relief tapers off to 67 per cent from July 1.

Louise Haigh said: "Local music and other hospitality venues are facing a perfect storm this summer.

“They are part of the rich fabric of our city, yet many are now living in fear that support will be pulled away just when they need it most.

“It is right we remain guided by the science to tackle this virus, but businesses must not pay the price for the Government's mishandling of the borders and the new variant.

“Ministers need to do whatever it takes to ensure these brilliant, much-loved venues are still here when the crisis is over.”

A quarter of the hospitality industry is still closed, with music venues and nightclubs legally required to shut, as well as those for whom it is not currently financially viable to open because of restrictions impacting trade, including wedding venues, events spaces and very small pubs and bars.

From 1 July, businesses will no longer be legally protected from evictions by their landlords. It is estimated that around £6 billion of debt accrued during the crisis is owed to commercial landlords - with 90 per cent of this total in the retail and hospitality sectors.

It is estimated that two-thirds of retailers in the UK are at risk of legal action on at least one of their stores, and around 40 per cent of hospitality businesses have not reached an agreement on rent arrears.

In the hospitality sector, 12,000 premises have already been lost during the crisis including 1 in 10 hotels and restaurants and 1 in 5 casual dining businesses.

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Thank you. Nancy Fielder, editor.