THE national shortage of hospitality staff has hit many pubs and restaurants in Lyme Regis.
Last month, UK Hospitality said there was a shortfall of about 188,000 workers in the industry, with the shortage of front-of-house staff and chefs being “particularly acute”.
It is thought this is down to staff leaving hospitality for more reliable work during the coronavirus pandemic, when the industry was severely affected by national lockdowns and restrictions, as well as fewer European workers in the country due to Brexit.
The national shortage has affected business in Lyme Regis, with almost every pub and restaurant advertising for staff in recent weeks, several offering cash bonuses and other incentives to attract applicants.
Now, some businesses have taken the unprecedented move to cut opening hours during one of their busiest ever periods to ensure staff are not “burnt out” ahead of the main summer season.
The Royal Standard on Marine Parade announced this week it would be closing for three days over July 6, 7 and 8 to give hardworking staff a well-earned break, as they did not have enough staff to allow them to take any time off while remaining open.
The Lyme Bay Café Bar on Bridge Street has reverted to its winter opening hours to give staff a break, commenting: “We have not made this decision lightly, but feel at this point we need to safe guard the team we have who have done a wonderful job since reopening but are overworked and in danger of ‘burning out’ before we even reach the summer holidays.”
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