London’s bars and restaurants are calling for a national rent freeze to help them survive, in a campaign led by the Hospitality Union called #NationalTimeOut.
The #NationalTimeOut Campaign calls on government to do the following:
- Allow a rent freeze from April-December 2020 for all hospitality businesses.
- Allow the landlord to extend each corresponding lease by 9 months so that those payments aren’t lost, just postponed.
- Enable the same push back for landlords on the next 9 months of their loan repayments, to help them bridge the cashflow gap from three quarters of no rent (with the debt secured on premises benefiting from the rent postponement).
- Include other protections and support for landlords, for example enhanced access to the Coronavirus Business Intervention Loan Scheme (CBILS); continued service charge and insurance payments so that premises can be maintained/safeguarded, and preventing penalties for postponed payment.
- A reduction of VAT for hospitality businesses for when we are allowed to reopen.
The #NationalTimeOut will apply only to businesses that have been forced to close by Government order and will be last to reopen.
After the 9 month rent freeze, on 31 January 2021, rental payments would start as normal again.
Leading figures from the restaurant world, including hospitality businesses in Paddington are backing the campaign. Big names including Yotam Ottolenghi, Tom Kerridge, Michel Roux Jr and Angela Hartnett have endorsed a letter sent to Chancellor Rishi Sunak, recommending that the entire sector be put ‘on hold’, allowing business owners to postpone paying rent for nine months.
With the government’s recent announcement that pubs and restaurants will be the last to reopen, thousands of much-loved high-street establishments, many of which are in Paddington, are facing a battle for survival.
PaddingtonNow BID encourages you to support this campaign in order to give the areas restaurants and pubs in Paddington a fighting chance of survival.
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