Britain’s bar sales drop 63% post-lockdown

18th August, 2020 by Owen Bellwood

Sales in Britain’s bar chains dropped 63.3% in July compared with the same period last year as venues reopened following the ease of lockdown restrictions.

Sales in Britain’s managed pubs, bars and restaurants dropped 50.4% in July

The Coffer Peach Business Tracker found that all parts of the hospitality market recorded trading well below July 2019 levels, but restaurants, bars and the London market struggled most.

The tracker found that sales in Britain’s managed bars were down 63.3% in July, while pub groups collectively saw sales fall 44.7% over the month.

London trading was down 58.3% in July, with venues outside the M25 reporting a sales drop of 48.5%.

Mark Sheehan, managing director of Coffer Corporate Leisure, said: “Despite the fanfare over the July 4 reopening date for hospitality, in reality trade is recovering slowly.

“The pub sector has proven to be more resilient as expected and is now bouncing back strongly in many areas. The August numbers will be helped by more people returning to work, Eat Out to Help Out, and also habits starting to return to usual and so we will see a marked increase in certain areas. Central London, however, still lags [behind] the rest of the country.”

On 4 July, hospitality outlets across England were allowed to reopen. Scotland’s pubs, bars and restaurants reopened on 15 July and parts of the hospitality industry were able to reopen in Wales on 13 July. No reopening date has been set yet for UK nightclubs.

According to the report, 76% of the group-owned sites that were trading in February were open again by the end of July. While 94% of managed pubs had reopened, just 62% of bars were back in business by this time.

Karl Chessell, director of CGA, added: “These total sales figures for July give us a clear picture, however, of how far the market still has to go to get back to pre-Covid levels of sales and also highlights the areas that remain under severe pressure, especially as working from home continues and footfall in city centres, and in particular central London, remains well down.

“The drop in sales across the market actually began in February, as Covid started to hit the headlines, and escalated in March, so that by the end of March the managed pub, bar and restaurant sector had already fallen into year on year decline, down 2.7% on the previous 12 months. At the end of July after three months of zero trade it was down 32.4% year-on-year.”

Leave a Reply

Subscribe to our newsletter