The head of pub chain Fuller’s has revealed at least 10 per cent of his around 5,000 staff are facing redundancy.
Simon Emeny said the government’s decision to encourage people to work from home where possible will hit Fuller’s London pubs hardest and result in job losses where a significant number of Fuller’s 400 pubs and hotels in the UK are based. The chain employs around 5,000 staff, meaning at least 500 people are likely to be let go.
“The biggest challenge we have around job losses is in central London, because the current Prime Minister’s announcement last week to discourage people from going back to the office is having a big impact on city centres and in particular Central London,” Emeny said.
“We are doing everything possible to minimise that, but sadly it is inevitable,” Emeny told BBC 5Live,
He said the sector had not been consulted ahead of the latest measures and that he and a number of industry leaders had written to prime minister Boris Johnson urging them to be reviewed every three weeks.
Despite previously hoping that the company would be able to save jobs, Emeny said that last Tuesday’s instruction to work from home was the “straw that broke the camel’s back” and that many of the job cuts would affect people under the age of 30, the age group which is “disproportionately” high in the sector.
He added: “The level of morale is possibly the highest it’s ever been. We are determined we will come through this as strongly as possible.”
Of Prime Minister Boris Johnson, he said, “I don’t think he’s had a good few months.”
“There are elements of the Prime Minister’s job that I don’t envy him but I also think there are significant elements where he has made continual mistakes and we have seen the government do u-turns on five or six key decisions,” he said.