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Coronavirus and its impact on the UK economy

ONS’s recently published figures on the UK’s economic growth showed an increase in GDP of 0.4% in August. The sectors providing the strongest contribution were accommodation and food services (0.28%growth) and arts, entertainment and recreation (0.13% growth). Things of particularly note include That economic output from the “sports activities and amusement and recreation activities industry”...

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Consultation on Permitted Development Rights

The government has launched a consultation on making a number of the Permitted Development Rights (PDRs) introduced during the COVID-19 outbreak permanent. The government is proposing to make planning reforms such as the right for moveable structures in the grounds of pubs, cafes, restaurants permanent. The consultation closes at 11:45pm on 14 November. NB important...

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VAT – clear benefits of reduced rate shown by survey

With the increase in VAT for accommodation and restaurants increasing from 5% to 12.5% today (1 October 2021), the  Tourism Alliance (with UK Hospitality, BBPA, AVLA and BII) has issued a press release based on the results of the VAT Survey that was sent to the hospitality industry earlier. Some of the main findings from...

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HSE spot checks

The Health and Safety Executive have announced that they are continuing to undertake spot-checks of businesses to make sure they are working safely with regard to coronavirus. The spot check programme provides expert advice during the calls and visits, advising businesses on how to manage risk and protect workers, customers and visitors. They are also...

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Farewell to furlough

The furlough scheme closes today (Thursday 30 September), amid media reports of uncertainty ahead for people who have not yet returned to work. Nearly one million workers were expected to be on the scheme at the end of September, according to estimates by the Office for National Statistics. Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic,...

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New Hospitality Council to deliver government Hospitality Strategy

Leading experts, businesses and entrepreneurs have been assembled to help deliver the government’s Hospitality Strategy through the newly-formed Hospitality Council.    The Council includes UK Hospitality CEO Kate Nicholls and experts who represent a cross-section of the sector, to support the delivery of the government’s Hospitality Strategy and oversee the actions related to the 22 commitments in it. The strategy aims to help hospitality firms to reopen, recover and become more resilient...

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Wales announces vaccine passports

The Welsh First Minister has announced that people will have to show an NHS COVID Pass to enter nightclubs and attend events in Wales from next month (October 2021). The measure is being introduced to help control the spread of coronavirus – cases are currently high in Wales, but the alert level will remain at...

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A resume of the latest COVID restrictions around the UK

Below is a brief resume of the rules restrictions that are currently (as at 20 September 2021) in place in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, together with links to the relevant guidance. England England has moved to Step 4 of the roadmap: Social distancing measures lifted No limits on the number of people who...

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Government’s Autumn and Winter Plan published

The Autumn and Winter Plan relating to how Government will deal with Coronavirus has been published. The key components of the plan include: Building defences through pharmaceutical interventions: vaccines, antivirals and disease modifying therapeutics. This includes maximising vaccine uptake among those who are eligible and not taken up the offer yet, offering booster doses to...

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Car drivers to be allowed to tow heavier trailers

Government has announced that all car drivers will be able to tow a trailer weighing up to 3,500kg without the need for an additional test (B+E) regardless of when they took their test.  This will take effect when the law is changed – the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) confirms this will be ‘as...