Restaurants reopen but another cliff edge looms.

Diners can venture back into restaurants today but with almost 10% closed permanently since the pandemic began, there are gaping holes in our high streets.

And with the moratorium on commercial evictions scheduled to end on June 30, some of the restaurants that have survived this long could also be on a cliff-edge.

22 restaurants per day closed their doors between March 2020 and April 2021, according to a new report by management consultants and business growth experts CGA and AlixPartners. The report concluded there are 9.7% fewer restaurants in the UK today than at the start of the pandemic.

In previous years (2019 and 2018) the number the number of restaurants dropped by 2.8% and 2% respectively.

Basil Fansa, founder of London’s shop-local club The Local Buyers Club and a former government economist, said: “A lot of restaurants which have been unable to trade for the past year have built up large debts. Those which have kept up to date with rent payments will have depleted reserves and, with eviction on the cards from the end of June for those with rent arrears, sadly we might see many more restaurants go under this summer.