A recent study has shown that there may be only 5,000 clubs in operation across the United Kingdom. These particular findings were made by two hospitality-focused software companies, Stampede and StoreKit. They used data they received from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
Between 2019-2020 and 2020-2021, the number of pubs, bars and nightclubs dropped across Britain and Northern Ireland, a trend that has only worsened because of the pandemic.
Compared to the 10,040 registered clubs in the UK in 2010, the figure has depleted to 6,985 by 2021. The data analysers predict that there is an excellent chance that there could be less than 5,000 clubs in the United Kingdom, especially if the pandemic continues to intrude.
Independent businesses, seated firmly within the entertainment sector, could end up facing financial struggles. “With continued uncertainty, home-working and low footfall there’s no denying that the industry is facing an extremely tough few months,” Christophe Delacroix, the CEO of StoreKit, revealed.
Michael Kill, chief executive of the NTIA, also highlighted the strain of the pandemic: “Nightclubs throughout this pandemic have been disproportionately targeted as high-risk settings without substantive evidence, almost ostracised publicly. The Government’s lack of understanding of this sector has led to ill-informed decision-making and businesses being marginalised or lost forever.”
Although the pandemic is responsible for decreased interest in night entertainment, there are other factors at play. According to another report, 86,000 people have lost their jobs within the nightlife industry since 2019. Dead phones also account for a lack of interest in going out, as a purported one in four 18-24-year-old age bracket abandoned at least one night out because of a dead, or dying, phone. The report surmises that 7.34% of British people claimed to have abandoned nights out from March 2019 to March 2020 because their phone was dead or dying.
Clubs, meanwhile, are set to reopen in Northern Ireland. Nightclubs will be able to reopen from January 26th, and vaccine passports will no longer be required to attend bars and restaurants.
“The pandemic is far from over but we are cautiously optimistic,” says Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill. “We believe we are through the peak and we believe we have some space now to be able to reverse the protections that we put in place over the course of the last number of weeks.”