ENTERTAINMENT

Coronavirus UK: Entrepreneurs Warn The Nation's Future Is Threatened


The dire cost of Boris Johnson's six month Covid battle was dramatically exposed last night.

Business chiefs and hospitality groups warned of the effects of the restrictions, saying there are now millions of jobs pending.

They said the prime minister's U-turn on his return to work message could spell the fate of warring highways as visitor numbers plummet and shops are boarded up.

In a passionate intervention, a prominent entrepreneur said the nation's prosperity was at stake.

Julian Metcalfe, who founded Pret A Manger and Itsu, said in a passionate intervention on Boris Johnson's six-month Covid clampdown that the nation's prosperity was now at stake

A woman wears a face mask as she stops to buy something to eat at a Pret A Manger store in Chelsea, London

A woman wears a face mask as she stops to buy something to eat at a Pret A Manger store in Chelsea, London

Julian Metcalfe, who founded Pret A Manger and Itsu, said, “The effects of these six months will be devastating for so many, for community councils, for industry and for people across our country.

“We have not yet begun to touch the seriousness of it. This six month speech is criminal. "

Despite rising national debt, Rishi Sunak is preparing a multi-billion "winter economic plan" to protect jobs.

The Chancellor signaled the true extent of the crisis by canceling plans for a full budget in November. Sources said he accepted that the country could no longer make long-term financial decisions.

Kate Nicholls, UK Hospitality General Manager

Emma McClarkin, executive director of the British Beer and Pub Association

Kate Nicholls, Managing Director of UK Hospitality (left) and Emma McClarkin, Managing Director of the British Beer and Pub Association (right)

Despite rising national debt, the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is preparing a multi-billion "winter economic plan" to try to protect jobs

Despite rising national debt, the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is preparing a multi-billion "winter economic plan" to try to protect jobs

How the Archbishops of Canterbury and York warned of the economic cost of Covid:

  • Hotel groups said a quarter of pubs and restaurants could go broke this year;
  • HMRC and Goldman Sachs were among Employers give up their drives to bring people back to the office;
  • Pictures showed main streets boarded up as shops responded to the crackdown.
  • The travel industry was desperate again when Downing Street warned of the risk of booking mid-term vacation.
  • Upper Crust and Caffe Ritazza are keeping two thirds of the sales outlets closed.
  • One large study warned countless patients living with worsening heart disease, diabetes, and mental health because of the lockdown.
  • MPs called for additional help for theater and music venues.
  • No. 10 said a home visit ban could be extended to much of England;
  • A mobile tracing app is finally launched today – four months late;
  • Matt Hancock's goal of running half a million virus tests a day by the end of next month was threatened by equipment shortages.
  • Scientific advisors suggested that students might be instructed to stay on campus over Christmas.

In a dramatic televised address to the nation Tuesday, Mr Johnson announced that he was abruptly dropping his call for workers to return to the office, which he had made repeatedly since the lockdown ended. He told pubs and restaurants to close their doors at 10 p.m. and doubled the fines for not wearing a mask or for not following the rule of six.

He said the measures were expected to take at least six months.

Led the backlash against the curbs on BBC Radio 4's World at One, Mr Metcalfe said he didn't know if Itsu could survive the measures.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (left) and Prime Minister Boris Johnson leave 10 Downing Street for a cabinet meeting at the London Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) before MPs return to Westminster after the summer break on September 1

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (left) and Prime Minister Boris Johnson leave 10 Downing Street to hold a Cabinet meeting at the London Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) before MPs return to Westminster after the summer break on September 1

He added, “People who work in hotels, restaurants, takeaways and cafes are devastated. Very many are closing – we are losing thousands and thousands of jobs.

"How long can this go on, this vague" work from home "," not using public transport "? The effects are simply enormous."

Mr Metcalfe accused the Prime Minister of "sitting down with his Union Jack and talking utter nonsense".

He said, "Going to a whole nation and saying," Stay home six months, "and saying church nonsense about how we're going to make it – that's terribly of little help. It should go," We're going to do the situation every week and check every hour. "

Tory MP Desmond Swayne said the government made the wrong call, adding, "I'm afraid the cure may be worse than the disease."

Tom Stainer, managing director of the Real Ale campaign, warned that if the crackdown were to take place, many pubs could be closed.

"Pub-goers and tax collectors want to stop the spread of Covid, but this curfew is an arbitrary restriction that is unfairly aimed at the hospitality industry and will have devastating effects on pubs, workplaces and communities," he added.

Revolution Bars' Rob Pitcher said, "It's incredible they put the 10pm curfew with no evidence of it."

Fashion mogul Sir Paul Smith warned the pandemic was devastating to his and other industries.

A former civil servant will say today that Mr Johnson's administration has proven incapable of fighting Covid.

Lord O’Donnell, a crossbench peer, will say in a speech that ministers have failed to use adequate data and have shifted too much to medical science at the expense of behavioral and economic experts.

He will also argue that there was a lack of strong leadership and clear strategy.

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