Tipple Stands with ‘#CancelTheCurfew’ after 30 per cent revenue loss

‘We will have to make substantial changes to the business in order to provide.’

Since Boris Johnson’s announcement that businesses such as restaurants, pubs and bars could face a fine of up to £10,000 if they are not shut by 10 pm, many hospitality venues across the country have drastically suffered.

A survey conducted by the Night-Time Industries Association and Sprout CRM revealed that out of 800 hospitality venues who partook in the survey, 72 per cent reported a 60 per cent drop in revenue since the curfew began and 27 per cent of the venues haven’t been able to reopen and Lancaster’s venues are no different.

One of Lancaster’s most beloved drinking venues, Tipple, has become one of many other businesses to be harmed by the new restrictions.

Tipple has backed the ‘Cancel the Curfew’ campaign

Tipple is a popular late-night cocktail bar on King Street, boasting a mouth-watering array of boozy cocktails. Previously open until two am, the business has seen a drastic fall of revenue since the curfew began, which is why they support the “Cancel the Curfew” campaign.

“Cancel the Curfew” is a national campaign, set up by hospitality businesses, to pressurise the Government into scrapping the 10 pm curfew. Supporters are encouraged to use the #CancelTheCurfew hashtag, to make a stand for businesses and their employees who may be affected.

The Lancaster Tab spoke to Patrick, Tipple’s manager, to discuss how the business has been affected. When asked how Tipple had been financially disadvantaged, Patrick disclosed that Tipple has seen a “30 per cent loss in income” since the curfew and that if it was here for the foreseeable future, he would have to “make substantial changes to the business in order to survive.”

Changes have already been made to Tipple, with a new one pm opening time and cakes being added to the menu until five pm.

Patrik went on to explain the importance of freshers’ week, citing it as “an opportunity for students to get to know Lancaster, but they are told it’s not safe to come into town, which is really damaging to businesses.”

Lancaster fresher’s week usually generates a large amount of income for Tipple, with curious students discovering the bar for the first time. However, Tipple has been unable to promote themselves at the university’s freshers fair as it was cancelled due to the pandemic, making them less known to new students than in previous years.

“The 10 pm curfew is dangerous because we can’t monitor [customers] when they aren’t on licensed premises.”

The 10 pm curfew has had a knock-on effect. It is not only licensed premises that are feeling the pinch but also the associated businesses like takeaways, security firms, taxis and hair and beauty salons.

Patrick believes that “the 10 pm curfew is dangerous because we can’t monitor [customers] when they aren’t on licensed premises.” He emphasized that “social distancing and getting customers out of the door by ten isn’t a problem, the problem is watching 200 or 300 people from different venues, crowding outside Tesco at 10 pm, buying drinks to take home.”

Tipple’s social distancing arrangement features extensive safety measures, with spread-out seating areas and staff that not just take table orders, but also remind customers to use the ‘track and trace’ app.  Closing time is also socially distanced with different tables leaving at staggered times so that people from different households do not mix.

“Cancel the Curfew” campaign reaches 3,000 signatures

Data shows that between 14 August and 20 September, just three per cent of coronavirus outbreaks were attributed to hospitality venues, compared to 42 per cent in schools. This data has fuelled the “Cancel the Curfew” campaign, with a petition being set up on petition.parliament.uk, which has surpassed 3,000 signatures.

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