The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) said the UK government was “deliberately” closing nightclubs and establishments across the country.
In a new statement, the organization said the government had taken deliberate steps to force small concert venues out of business, and listed the ways in which it had done so.
The statement claims that, unlike other European countries, the UK views the nightlife sector as a “burden on the police and local authorities” and has put forward numerous measures leading to the closure of one nightclub every three days from 2019.
“Nightclubs and venues across the UK have been hit hardest by the crisis,” the NTIA said. “These businesses contribute billions in taxes to HMRC and local authorities in the area of taxation, but in return receive very little support from the government. Each of these businesses plays an important role in the recovery of the local economy and is of great importance in communities outside the dance floor.”
As emphasized in the statement, the upcoming termination of the state energy supply program and the ever-increasing costs will most affect small facilities.
This is due to the fact that in the coming months, operating expenses will increase by more than 100%, but the financial assistance offered by the government will end, which means that institutions will pay significantly more to stay open.
According to the statement, this will then worsen due to an increase in the national minimum wage. The minimum wage, which comes into force on April 1, will increase by 9.7%, from 9.50 to 10.42 pounds.
“It is now becoming quite clear that the government has spent the last 3 years deliberately trying to close down nightclubs and establishments, trying to close down dance floors and stages across the country,” he continued.
“In the coming months, we will see the consequences of government inaction, and many important businesses of the night economy will be lost,” added NTIA CEO Michael Kill.
Efforts were made last month to keep smaller venues afloat, with a number of new arenas being scrutinized to help invest money back into mass music spaces. There are currently plans to open eight new arenas across the country, including in the cities of Cardiff and Bristol.
Elsewhere, back in January, a report showed that a third of UK nightclubs had closed by the end of 2022. Earlier, five organizations representing the UK hospitality sector wrote an open letter to the UK government explaining what changes needed to be made if they were smaller. places can survive the aforementioned energy crisis.
According to the latest NTIA report, only 870 nightclubs remain open in the UK today, compared with 1,446 in 2019.
Concerns about rising energy prices and the impact this will have on the nightlife industry were also voiced last August, when the government was warned that “the energy crisis will close more establishments than COVID” if they do not intervene.