MORE than 5,000 pubs that shut their doors before the latest lockdown could remain closed forever, according to industry experts.
New data shows 30 per cent had already stopped trading by the end of October.
The figures cover the period before the current lockdown but take into account the tiered system introduced by the government which saw venues shut in the most restricted areas.
Analysts CGA and AlixPartners estimated that 43 per cent will not reopen.
That figure will be even worse if lockdown restrictions continue as the chains slim down their own estates to shed the worst performing sites while independents find they can no longer afford to keep the business going.
Karl Chessell of CGA said: “We are unlikely to see Britain’s licensed premises return to the levels seen in the summer, let alone pre-pandemic, for a long time.
“Financially robust companies should be able to sustain themselves through the lockdown, and the extension of the government’s furloughing scheme will undoubtedly save some businesses.
“But much more support is going to be needed to prevent a wave of permanent closures over the winter.”
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