Sustaining the UK Hospitality Sector | IPT
Chair: Darren Jones MP, Chair, Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy Select Committee
Speaker: Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive, UKHospitality
Speaker: Ian Wright, Chief Executive, Food and Drink Federation
Speaker: Laurence Meehan, Corporate Relations Director, Diageo Great Britain
Virtual Event


Tuesday 08 December 2020


This is an online event

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End Time:


The hospitality industry is the third largest employer in the United Kingdom and generated £72 billion of gross value added directly to the UK economy in 2018, along with a further £86 billion indirectly. The sector has been hit hard by coronavirus with 80% of firms stopping trade in April, placing 1.4 million workers on furlough. Sales plummeted by 87% in the second quarter of 2020, equivalent to nearly £30 billion in lost revenue. A report by Oxford Economics estimates that nearly 300,000 jobs in hospitality, one-third of sector total, may be lost with people under 25 disproportionately affected. One-quarter of the industry think they’re at risk of insolvency. The Eat Out to Help Out Scheme saw 84,700 restaurants take part, with more than 100 million meals claimed. Data from OpenTable shows that on the final day of the scheme, 31 August, there was a 216% jump in bookings against the equivalent day in 2019. However, by the end of September there were still almost 1 million hospitality staff on furlough. With difficulties set to continue for several months, what could help the sector weather the storm?

This event will:

  • Consider financial measures that could assist the sector, such as cutting VAT, changing business rates and possible grants.
  • Explore what role hospitality could play in post-18 education training, including hospitality specific training.
  • Examine what measures could be taken the protect public health whilst helping businesses continue trading.