Popular Northampton nightclub owner warns industry 'won't make it to June' without Government support

NBs owner Marc Sawer says he can't make a judgement on this week's 'road map out of lockdown' without hearing next week's budget

Wednesday, 24th February 2021, 6:00 am
NBs owner Marc Sawer says the road map out of lockdown "means nothing" until his industry gets more financial support.

A Northampton nightclub owner says it is too soon for his industry to celebrate the return of England's nightlife this summer without hearing next week's budget.

The Prime Minister set out this week (February 23) the Government's plan to end all Covid-19 restrictions by June 21.

It marks the first prospect of nightlife returning to the country's towns and cities since the first lockdown in March 2020.

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But a Northampton nightclub owner says it "means nothing" unless the industry gets a last round of financial help to reach finish line in three months time.

Marc Sawer, owner of NBs in Bridge Street, said of this week's announcement: "It's not really what I wanted to hear but it was expected we were going to reopen last.

"I can't say the Government hasn't been helpful getting through this so far - but the money we've been given to stay afloat is gone.

"If it's going to go to June means without financial help we are not going to survive until then."

NBs spent several months in the past year operating as a pub and joined countless others faced with a summer season with only a fraction of its usual trade.

The 'road map' announced this week aims to lift all limits on social contact and large gatherings on June 21.

Pubs and restaurants have been given prospects of an earlier start. Venues should be able to serve customers outdoors starting April 12, and indoors with the rule-of-six from May 17.

But Marc's thoughts echo what pubs and restaurants in Northampton told the Chronicle & Echo earlier this week, with concerns not everyone in the hospitality industry will be able to return as quick as one another and will need financial support to reach June.

Marc said: "Without a little bit more support a lot of people are going to go pop.

"No one wants to succumb to the situation now with three or four months to go. But if we don't come back at full kilt we'll just be losing money as we go."

The Prime Minister told the House of Commons on Monday there would be more information about support for businesses in the budget announcement on Mcarch 3.