Chesterfield landlord warns pubs and restaurant may shut due to a lack of staff post-pandemic

A Chesterfield pub landlord has warned venues may shut unless more staff can be attracted into the industry.

Thursday, 15th July 2021, 3:02 pm

Mark Aisthorpe, of the Bulls Head, Holymoorside, said many places are struggling to fill vacancies due to Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic.

He said: “Hospitality been one of the worst-hit industries by Covid. People have had to get other work due to uncertainty in the trade when pubs and restaurants had to close and these people have now settled in other sectors, leaving us short-staffed.

“Also there was a massive amount of European workers that have returned home and now can’t come back, leaving us short-staffed.”

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Michelin-starred London restaurant Le Gavroche has temporarily stopped serving lunch, due to staff shortages.

Owner Michel Roux Jr said: “Restaurants have suffered greatly with staffing, partly due to Brexit regulations, as well as a lack of well-trained hospitality professionals since the pandemic.”

Mr Aisthorpe said: “When I joined the trade 15 years ago, he’d have had dozens of CVs on his desk each morning from around the world. If he can’t get staff, what chance do others have?

‘Not a proper career’

“Hospitality is seen as a stepping stone between college and university and not a proper career, like it is in France etc. People who choose to make a career of it are viewed poorly compared with other professions.

“I thought when Covid hit there would be lots of venues go bust due to a loss of income, but I think the issue is going to be staff leaving, even though the trade is there,.

“The problem is we’ve no staff to serve clients, meaning they’re waiting longer, become unhappy and don’t return – that’s what’s going to make places close.

“There needs to be major support from the government to incentivise people to learn and join the trade.”

Gareth Jones, owner of The Real Ale Corner micro-pub, Brampton, said: “It’s an issue across all hospitality. They were the ones who lost jobs during the pandemic, so are reluctant to go back into it.”

A Government spokesman said: “We’ve implemented an unprecedented package of measures to support businesses during the pandemic and our multi-billion-pound Plan for Jobs is helping people retrain, build skills and get back into work.

“We’re working to promote jobs in the sector and are supporting workers into these roles.”

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