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250,000 London hospitality jobs at risk, warns UKH chief

Over 250,000 hospitality workers may face unemployment as a result of second tier restrictions now imposed in London, the chief executive of UKHospitality has warned. 

According to Sky News, UKH chief Kate Nicholls has written to London Mayor Sadiq Khan warning that his demand for the capital to be moved to a higher level of restriction would be “incredibly damaging without additional financial support”. 

The outlet reported that chief executive Katie Nicholls’ letter was sent out this Wednesday (14 October) 24 hours before the government announced that London will be placed under tighter isolation laws this coming Saturday (17 October).

Under the new restrictions all household mixing in pubs and restaurants will be banned, the rule of six will apply outdoors and hospitality establishments will have to close by 10pm.

The government’s new three-tier system classifies every area in England as being on medium, high or very high alert, depending on the rate of infection.

A letter obtained by Sky News read: “With the announcement of the new tiered restrictions system, focused almost entirely on the hospitality sector, we have moved into a new phase of financial peril for our businesses, their employees, the capital’s tourism offer, and the social and cultural prospects for Londoners. 

“The current restrictions, the 10pm curfew, the instruction to work from home and various other impositions on customers and staff – have combined to severely dampen trade, particularly in London. Across the UK, London has the lowest proportion of pubs, bars and restaurants open of any region with one in six still closed.”

Nicholls added that “mass” job losses, potentially up to 250,000 in London alone, will be “unavoidable” unless further Government support is offered.

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