It goes without saying that the retail, hospitality and leisure industries are vital to the UK economy, worth £635bn combined. In 2019, the retail sector alone generated £394bn worth of sales, while the leisure sector has reached over £111bn in sales, and the hospitality sector accounts for £130bn in revenue and over 3.2 million jobs. That amounts to 11% of all UK jobs and makes hospitality the third largest sector in the UK.
Whether or not you work in these industries, the likelihood is that you know someone who does and you more than rely on these people every single day. We are living in uncertain times and we don’t know exactly how COVID-19 is going to affect the UK economy, which is why more needs to be done to protect vulnerable businesses and grant them the opportunity to survive.
Croydon BID are leading a new collective national campaign that is asking the government to urgently consider raising the £25,000 grant rateable value threshold from £51,000 to £150,000 in order to support those that work for and manage businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure industries. Many industry leaders and businesses are backing this request, knowing that it will offer the single biggest difference in the commercial fight against COVID-19 for many people.
You can check out the open letter addressed to Rt. Hon. Alok Sharma MP, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Energy, here. Then, please sign the petition to support the campaign, which is due to be presented to the government very soon. Visit the Raise The Bar campaign website to find out more.