Strong April for pubs, bars and restaurants but inflation eats growth

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

The UKHospitality Quarterly Tracker combined with CGA shows revenue over the past 12 months up 4.1% on pre-pandemic levels, but is still 'well below' comparable sales needed to catch up with inflation

"April's trading figures show the impressive resilience and appeal of managed restaurant, pub and bar groups in a very challenging market," - Karl Chessell

April trading has been fuelled by holidays such as Easter and the beginning of bank holiday weekend in early May.

The good weather was helping to lure consumers into pubs where like-for-like like sales were up 8.1 per cent compared to April 2022.

Growth in the restaurant sector remained somewhat subdued at 7.6%, but bars had another tough month, with sales dropping 9.1%.

"Unfortunately, these figures no longer come as a surprise and simply reinforce the chronic nature of the pressure hospitality is under due to inflation," - Kate Nicholls

The managed groups' recoveries continued after the Covid crisis in London, where April sales rose 10.4 per cent on an annualised basis well above inflation.

Growth outside the M25 amounted to 5.8 per cent.