Paul Newman, head of leisure and hospitality at RSM UK: ‘The hospitality industry is currently grappling with stealth costs it has no control over due to high inflation. Planned inflation-linked rises in business rates, rent reviews tied to the Retail Price Index (RPI) alongside National Living Wage increases will all come together in April next year to cast a shadow over the viability of bars, pubs and restaurants across the UK.
‘We know the golden quarter is going to be tough for the hospitality sector this year, with four out of ten Brits planning on cutting back on socialising this Christmas*, which is a significant blow during the busiest trading time of year.
‘With headline inflation rates expected to fall quite dramatically over the coming months, consumers will be less sympathetic to the price rises that businesses will have to charge to cover the further cost increases set to be inflicted on the sector. The Chancellor should use the Autumn Statement to freeze business rates and extend the current rates relief packages to help the hospitality industry survive the current high inflationary environment and stimulate growth in 2024.’