Total consumer spending grew 11.1 per cent in June compared with the same period in 2019, as restrictions eased and Britons socialised more in public settings.

spending increase

Inews reports that spending in pubs and bars rose by almost 40 per cent in June as people flocked to watch the Euros and enjoy a spell of sunshine.

Barclaycard compared last month’s figures to levels for the same period in 2019. It was the first sales growth across hospitality since September 2020.

It is believed sporting that events such as the Euros and Wimbledon, together with warmer weather, helped spark the boost across the hospitality sector. Restaurants also enjoyed an 8.4 per cent rise in sales.

Overall, consumer spending grew 11.1 per cent in June compared with the same period in 2019, as Covid-19 restrictions eased and Britons started socialising more in public settings.

It is thought the early summer “staycation” boom also contributed to the promising numbers, which look set to carry on thanks to the upcoming Tokyo Olympics, and “freedom day” on 19 July.

“The Euro 2020 tournament was a welcome boost for hospitality in reminding people of the joy and thrill of watching important sporting moments as a shared experience, with fantastic food, drink and atmosphere in safe, supervised venues designed for such occasions,” said Kate Nicholls, the chief executive of UKHospitality, which represents the industry. However, bosses are still warning that pubs and restaurants have a long road to recovery.

Ms Nicholls added: “The sector is experiencing severe staff shortages, compounded massively by the absence of team members who have been told to isolate despite not having shared shifts with colleagues who tested positive. What the Government has so far proposed is too little and too late.

“With cases predicted to continue to rise, this means that hospitality’s recovery after 16 months of lockdown and severely disrupted trading will be harmed.”

Lawson Mountstevens, the managing director of Star Pubs & Bars, told i: “Clearly the England game wasn’t the result we’d liked to have seen, but it was a good evening for pubs to welcome back many of their customers, with trade up threefold as people headed to their local to watch the match.

“This was a huge and much-needed boost for a sector that continues to face huge challenges.

“As we focus our attention on 19 July, we hope the Prime Minister will address the impact the Track and Trace app is having on hospitality, and call on him to provide longer-term support for the pub sector, such as an extension of business rate relief, a reduction in beer and cider duty as well as an extension to the VAT reduction.”

(Story source: Inews)

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