Covid, inflation, energy crisis… In the UK, pub bankruptcies are accelerating

The number of pubs has been declining across the country for several decades, but recent shocks have accelerated this decline. HENRY NICHOLLS / REUTERS

In 2022, 512 pubs filed for bankruptcy, up from 280 the previous year, as energy prices soared, fraying businesses.

Rising costs and falling sales: the purchasing power crisis is hitting iconic British pubs hard, which last year saw the number of bankruptcies soar by 83% year on year in the sector, according to the British cabinet of accountants UHY Hacker Young. “After a tough time during the pandemic, many pubs and bars find themselves with very little savings or ability to borrow more“, and for some, “the current economic downturn has been the latest push into insolvency“Explains the firm on Monday in a press release.

SEE ALSO – Maurice Gourdault-Montagne: “We must not bury the United Kingdom too quickly, the rebound capacities of this country are impressive”

During the Covid-19 pandemic, government aid had kept many companies on life support. But in 2022, 512 pubs filed for bankruptcy, up from 280 the previous year, during a period when energy prices soared, straining business budgets, the statement said. At the same time, the cost of living crisisaffected consumer habits, making them less likely to spend on non-essentials“, Continues the cabinet, for which the strikes of railway workers for wages, which have multiplied in recent months in the country, have also diverted customers from pubs in city centers.

The number of pubs has been slowly declining across the country for several decades, but “recent shocks like the pandemic and the energy crisis have put (these institutions) under greater pressure than ever“, according to the sectoral federation, the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA). Ahead of the presentation of the budget to Parliament on March 15, the organization for its part called on the government to “invest in pubs and breweries now or lose them forever», in particular via a more advantageous tax system. “After almost three extremely difficult years due to lockdowns, an energy crisis, disrupted supply chains, strikes and a dramatic drop in consumer confidence“, the sector is at a turning point, assures the BBPA.

SEE ALSO – Where is the UK going? Find the Club Le Figaro International

Source link -94