Wales: UKHospitality renews call for urgent support

27 February, 2024

UKHospitality has renewed its call for urgent support for Welsh businesses after the country suffered the most post-pandemic sector closures in the UK.

New figures show that Wales has lost 17% of its licensed hospitality venues since the start of the pandemic, compared to 14% in England and 13% in Scotland.

In the wake of the new data, UKHospitality Cymru has once more asked the Welsh government to keep business rates support at 75% in April.

It said the planned reduction in relief to 40% would leave Welsh businesses significantly disadvantaged to their counterparts in England. A typical pub would be nearly £7,000 worse off and an average-sized coastal hotel would see bills at least £20,000 higher.

Furthermore, some Welsh cities and towns are already feeling the brunt of serious levels of closures, with the 25% of venues lost in Swansea post-pandemic being one of the highest rates recorded in the UK.

David Chapman, UKHospitality Cymru executive director, said:

“The stark numbers reflect the extent to which Welsh hospitality businesses have suffered since the start of the pandemic. The Welsh government’s decision to reduce business rates relief will simply widen the gap between Welsh and English businesses, worsening the situation for businesses. For a key city like Swansea to have already suffered the loss of more than one in four venues is incredibly concerning. We need immediate, increased business rates support followed by fast-track reform, or more closures are inevitable.”

Source: The Caterer

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