UK pubs and restaurants lost £30bn of sales in Q2

Sales at pubs, restaurants and hotels in the UK fell by 87% during the Covid-19 lockdown, according to industry data.

After the government ordered restaurants, pubs, bars, hotels, attractions and other hospitality venues to close in late March, sales in the second quarter totalled just £4.6bn — down by £29.6bn from £34.2bn in the second quarter of 2019.

The UKH Tracker compiled by food and drinks industry analytics firm CGA confirms the “enormous and disproportionate” impact of lockdown on the hospitality industry, CGA said.

Hospitality contributed £133.5bn to the UK economy in 2019, but the rolling annual value of the sector has now dipped below £100bn, with 12-month sales to the end of June totalling £97.2bn.

Kate Nicholls, CEO of trade association UK Hospitality, said the data shows that many firms still need government support.

“While it’s great that some businesses are trading again, for many opening their doors remains unviable, while some parts of hospitality are still legally required to stay closed,” she explained. “We are only on the very first steps in a long recovery.”

“Our Tracker data is the clearest picture yet of the calamitous impact of the pandemic on hospitality,” added Phil Tate, group CEO of CGA. “Hospitality was one of the first sectors to go into full-on lockdown and one of the last to come out, and the result was a virtual wipeout of sales in the second quarter.

“This is a resilient and dynamic industry, and its reopening in July has given the whole country a lift, but Covid-19 has brought unprecedented and existential challenges. Hospitality needs and deserves the support of the government and public as it begins the long road to recovery.”