Committee to highlight plight of Falkirk's hospitality industry during COVID-19 lockdown
Westminster MPs are set to examine the impact the coronavirus pandemic and its associated lockdown has had on Scotland’s hospitality businesses.
The Scottish Affairs Committee will meet representatives from Scotland’s hospitality industry on Thursday to discuss the matter in depth a couple of weeks before pubs and restaurants in Falkirk and the rest of the country prepare to open doors to customers once more.
According to the committee, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit home hospitality was Scotland’s third largest employer, providing 285,000 jobs and supporting 72,000 more, contributing £6 billion to the economy.
A committee spokesperson said: “The sector has been hit by loss of income since coronavirus struck with UKHospitality estimating a drop in trade of more than 60 per cent from 2019 to 2020.”
Committee members and expert speakers – including Scottish Hospitality Group spokesman Stephen Montgomery and UKHospitality executive director Willie Macleod – will look at a number of issues during the session, including the financial and employment impacts of lockdowns on Scottish hospitality and the UK and Scottish Government support for the sector.
They will also look at the concerns for the re-opening of hospitality businesses, which is due to happen on April 26.
From that date pubs, cafes and restaurants can open outdoors until 10pm and will be permitted to sell alcohol. Up to six people from three households can meet outside from this date.
Indoor hospitality will also be allowed to reopen, but only until 8pm and alcohol will not be allowed. People must meet in groups of up to four people from two households.