Marstons says it will axe up to 2,150 jobs

Marstons says it will axe up to 2,150 jobs

Pub and brewery group Marstons says it will axe up to 2,150 furloughed jobs following new restrictions to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The company said since the first lockdown was lifted, 10,000 of its employees had returned to work.

But Marstons said new measures such as the 10pm curfew and restrictions in Liverpool mean 2,150 roles are going to be impacted.

The current wage subsidy scheme expires at the end of this month.

It is being replaced by the Job Support Scheme which will top-up wages for employees who have not been able to return to work full-time because of the coronavirus.

The company said that since 4 July it had reopened 99% of its pubs and “consumer confidence increased steadily throughout July, August and into September”.

However, it said new restrictions such as the 10pm curfew, table-only service and the closure of pubs in some areas of Scotland had undermined consumer confidence.

Marstons said: “The introduction of these further restrictions and guidance affecting pubs is hugely disappointing in view of a lack of clear evidence tying pubs to the recent increase in infection levels, and our own data which suggests that pubs are effective in minimising risks.”

In the 13 weeks since reopening, it said sales were 10% below last year. July recorded the biggest fall, with sales down 26% before turning positive again in August. However, in September, trade dropped by 12%.

Marstons said it has 21 pubs in Scotland, of which eight are currently closed. It also has 18 pubs in the “highest risk” Liverpool region, the majority of which can serve food so therefore can remain open.