Scotland / 06 October 2020

SBPA Responds to Speculation of Further Restrictions for Hospitality Sector

‘Further restrictions must be avoided or at very least accompanied by additional economic support – thousands of jobs at risk’ 

 Responding to speculation of further harsh restrictive measures being announced by the Scottish Government tomorrow (Wednesday), the Scottish Beer & Pub Association (SBPA) have said that thousands of jobs will be put at risk if more restrictions are implemented without consultation, notice and additional economic support for the sector.   

 Commenting, CEO of the SBPA, Emma McClarkin said:  

 “The prospect of further restrictions on pubs is filling our sector with complete dread. Across Scotland, pub operators will be unable to sleep tonight for fear of what will happen to their business and their staff. This must be avoided. 

 “Pubs and the wider hospitality sector in Scotland are already suffering from the additional restrictive measures currently in place. The ban on background music and noise from televisions has already seen trade fall of a cliff for many premises, and the 10pm curfew has had a disproportionate impact in Scotland due to the normal closing time being midnight or 1am. This means that every week Scottish pubs are losing as many as 21 hours more trade than pubs elsewhere in the UK.  

“If the Scottish Government is to implement further harsh restrictive measures to our sector, it must include a dedicated package of support alongside it. Without it the Scottish Government will leave our pubs and thousands of jobs doomed to failure.  

“We are unaware of any data which shows that the hospitality sector is a major cause of transmission. Pubs across the country have risen to the challenges posed by COVID-19, putting in place rigorous cleaning regimes and countless protective measures making pubs a safe and regulated place to socialise.   

 “Scotland’s pubs are already on the brink. Further restrictive measures, whether complete closure or further restrictions of hours, without economic support, would mean hundreds of businesses closing for good with thousands of jobs lost and livelihoods ruined.” 

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