JD Wetherspoon makes first loss in 36 years

Pub chain J.D. Wetherspoon has recorded its first loss since 1984, with a deficit of £105.4 million for the 52 weeks to 26 July 2020.

In its preliminary results, published today, the pub operator announced that its revenue had fallen by 30.6%, from £1.82 billion in 2019 to £1.26 billion this year.

In a statement accompanying the results, chairman Tim Martin criticised the implementation of tighter regulations to control the spread of coronavirus, calling them “ill-thought-out”.

“[They] are extraordinarily difficult for the public and publicans to understand and to implement, ” he said. “None of the new regulations appear to have any obvious basis in science.

“The most damaging regulation relates to the 10pm curfew, which has few supporters outside of the narrow cloisters of Downing Street and SAGE meetings. This has meant that many thousands of hospitality industry employees, striving to maintain hygiene and social-distancing standards, go off duty at 10pm, leaving people to socialise in homes and at private events which are, in reality, impossible to regulate.”

Speaking about the 11 weeks after the 26 July, he said that there had been “strong sales”, followed by a “marked slowdown” since the introduction of the 10pm closing time.

Last month it was announced that 66 Wetherspoon staff members working at 50 sites had recorded positive cases of Covid-19. The staff were told to self-isolate and were paid in full, while other employees were brought in to cover shifts so that the pubs could remain open.

The pub operator also stated that up to 450 jobs at its airport sites were at risk, with a spokesperson confirming to the BBC that 108 head office staff had so far been made redundant.

It follows news earlier this week that up to 2,150 pub-based jobs at Marston’s were at risk after the company announced a full review of its spending due to be completed in December.

Leave your reply

Most Recent Stories

You can now bathe in cocktails at this spa experience

We've all had that fantasy where we're sloshing about in a bathtub full of Strawberry Woo Woo right? No?

Unfiltered: Hannah Crosbie

Billed by the newly formed PR agency, ‘Hot Sauce Presents’ as ‘the sexiest voice in wine’, Hannah Crosbie is the founder of Dalston Wine Club, and is currently assuming a residency selling wines at East London’s ‘Lady Garden’…

Meet the rising stars of hospitality who won big in GB this week

Three rising stars of the hospitality world were rewarded this week at the Chaine des Rotisseurs GB Young Professional Awards at the new Harrods Social by Jason Atherton.

Diageo opens 0.0% lounge at Heathrow T5

Diageo Global Travel has opened an immersive alcohol-free experiential space, called Lounge 0.0%, in Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 5.

Unfiltered: Eduardo Brea Luengo

The Spanish head sommelier at Cotswold’s gourmet bolthole, The Feathered Nest counts Restaurant Pablo and Casa Marcelo in his homeland on his CV, as well as Sketch in London, The Swan, Ascott-under-Wychwood, and Soho Farmhouse, Chipping Norton. He is particularly interested in wines from Bierzo, Montsant, Dao, Rousillon and sherry and Port as well as what he calls “the fresh New World”…

Most Recent Stories

You can now bathe in cocktails at this spa experience

We've all had that fantasy where we're sloshing about in a bathtub full of Strawberry Woo Woo right? No?

Unfiltered: Hannah Crosbie

Billed by the newly formed PR agency, ‘Hot Sauce Presents’ as ‘the sexiest voice in wine’, Hannah Crosbie is the founder of Dalston Wine Club, and is currently assuming a residency selling wines at East London’s ‘Lady Garden’…

Meet the rising stars of hospitality who won big in GB this week

Three rising stars of the hospitality world were rewarded this week at the Chaine des Rotisseurs GB Young Professional Awards at the new Harrods Social by Jason Atherton.

Diageo opens 0.0% lounge at Heathrow T5

Diageo Global Travel has opened an immersive alcohol-free experiential space, called Lounge 0.0%, in Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 5.

Unfiltered: Eduardo Brea Luengo

The Spanish head sommelier at Cotswold’s gourmet bolthole, The Feathered Nest counts Restaurant Pablo and Casa Marcelo in his homeland on his CV, as well as Sketch in London, The Swan, Ascott-under-Wychwood, and Soho Farmhouse, Chipping Norton. He is particularly interested in wines from Bierzo, Montsant, Dao, Rousillon and sherry and Port as well as what he calls “the fresh New World”…