Covid-19: Hospitality Industry

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:02 pm on 24th March 2021.

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Photo of Adam Holloway Adam Holloway Conservative, Gravesham 5:02 pm, 24th March 2021

I congratulate my hon. Friend Selaine Saxby on securing this important debate. I will make just a couple of points, on dates and on data.

Earlier this afternoon, I rang a friend who runs the Griffin Inn in Sussex to ask about this, and he said that dates are vital. We must stick to any dates that we have. Over Christmas, of course, many establishments lost enormous amounts of money buying in stock that they then could not use. In his case, I think it was £25,000-worth of stuff.

On data, some people are having a very good time of it. Supermarkets are making a fortune. Pubs and hospitality have been amazingly supported by the Government, but we must not forget the point made by Ian Eldridge, who runs a restaurant in my constituency called Bartellas, that they still have enormous costs. They have employer contributions, lease purchase deals and lots of monthly contracts, and of course they also have maintenance.

My second point on data is a plea to the Minister and, indeed, the Prime Minister: things do seem to be going, thank God, in a very good direction in terms of hospitalisation and deaths, and if we can unlock hospitality earlier, let us not be dogmatic about it—let us do it. Let us reopen well-run hospitality, because I would much prefer my constituents to be drinking there than cramped in their front rooms.