UKH: Welsh hospitality needs ‘clarity’ on reopening

UKHospitality (UKH) Cymru is calling on Wales’ first minister Mark Drakeford to provide hospitality businesses with “clarity” in regards to their eventual reopening and what financial support they are entitled to.

Speaking on BBC’s Andrew Marr Show this past weekend, Drakeford said he will reveal plans for reopening on Thursday (1 April) to give the sector “the certainty that it’s looking for”.

Over the weekend, self-contained holiday accommodation, including hotels with en suite facilities and room service, were allowed to reopen for people from the same household or support bubble.

The country’s ‘stay local’ rules were lifted, however non-essential travel between other countries in the UK is still banned for at least two more weeks.

However, the Welsh government has yet to publish its own ‘roadmap’ out of lockdown and has only provided the date 22 April as the reopening of outdoor services.

David Chapman, UKH Cymru’s executive director said: “We warmly welcome the announcement of some parts of the industry: self-catering, holiday parks and hotels with room service only, returning tomorrow.

“However, the news that outdoor hospitality will not be considered for reopening until at least April 23rd is disappointing, disruptive and damaging to businesses that are desperate to know when they can tell guests when they can return.”

He added: “Our businesses see retail and other areas opening up while they are frustrated and fearful for their existence. Existing support runs out in five days and they are hanging on by their fingernails financially.

“We are only asking for a fair and level playing field that offers clarity and financial stability. Local hospitality businesses are ready to go with full guidelines containing a set of mitigations that will make them safe and welcoming.”

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