Shropshire Star

Wave of cancelled bookings puts damper on Shropshire festive celebrations

A wave of cancellations of bookings for festive meals and parties has hit Shropshire's hospitality industry hard, with restaurants, pubs and clubs all seeing customers crying off their planned events.

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Bar manager Natalie Bailey from the Station Hotel, Wellington, concerned about trade leading up to Christmas

The announcement of Plan B, the introduction of Covid passes for nightclubs and large venues and the chief medical officer saying that people should be cautious has seen a drop in footfall for hospitality.

Many owners and licensees say that they need financial support to pick themselves up from this latest blow.

Martin Monahan, who runs The Buttermarket nightclub, Peach Tree restaurant and Havana Republic bar in Shrewsbury, said people have been dissuaded from going to pubs and restaurants.

"The whole of hospitality has been affected, and the Government will need to put in place some sort of financial support, lockdown or no lockdown," he said.

"We've had cancellations, and the immediate future is looking quite bleak."

The Station Hotel, Wellington

General manger of the Station Hotel and Bar in Wellington, Kad Zaman, said it was really tough for the hospitality industry at the moment.

"A lot of people have been cancelling parties this week," he said.

"There is definitely a fear in the air despite the fact that all our Covid measures are in place.

"This is a big operation. When table service was brought in after the lockdown of this year we had to take on many more staff. Now I fear for their jobs. The Government must make a decision on how it can help the industry."

Sam Jennison who runs Cafe Zero in Bridgnorth has noticed a fall off in trade in the run-up to Christmas.

She said it was hard to tell if this was due to people saving in the run up to Christmas, or whether it is due to increased media reports of the Omicron variant having a chilling effect on people.

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