Alan Thomas, UK CEO at Simply Business, one of the UK’s largest providers of small business insurance, commented on the positive effect the King’s Coronation will have on the UK hospitality industry:
“The King’s Coronation weekend will offer a vital cash injection for the hospitality sector, with pubs across the UK expecting a £120 million boost in sales – a welcome break after a challenging period. Data from the Beer and Pub Association predicts 62 million pints will be poured over the bank holiday weekend, an extra 17 million compared to normal.
“Few have been hit harder over the last few years than small hospitality businesses, who have lost £40,000 each on average due to the pandemic – almost double that of the average SME. Pubs continue to close at alarming rates – a staggering 1,800 since 2019 – and are at their lowest number on record.
“The challenges affecting the hospitality sector reflect the wider landscape for small businesses across the country. Sole traders and microbusinesses are also feeling the pressure from the deteriorating economic climate more than most. With many struggling to pass on rising costs to their customers, they will inevitably feel the squeeze. The recent rises in inflation will also be affecting consumer purchasing behaviour, which is another blow to the margins of small business owners.
“This comes at a time when many are still in recovery mode. Over two years on, one in six still believe that they will never financially recover from the pandemic. As a result, two in five small business owners are calling for long-lasting financial support from the government to help them get back on their feet after Covid-19 and in the midst of the cost of living crisis.
“The Coronation boost will no doubt be welcome news to many small businesses, and we would encourage people to get out and about and support their locals this weekend. Ultimately, though, more needs to be done to support the long term prosperity of the industry, and small businesses are looking to the government for support.”