“Tim Martin’s words today are typically blunt but that candour is unsurprising when you consider how keenly the shut-down has been felt across his business,” comments Danni Hewson finance analyst at AJ Bell.
“Less than half of the pubs in the Wetherspoons chain will be able to reopen in April; this is an empire that’s been built to cater for city centre revellers and outdoor space is often limited. No doubt Mr Martin will be keeping a close eye on the results of the legal challenge being brought against the government to bring forward the reopening of indoor hospitality in line with non-essential retail. Every day the tills aren’t ringing, costs are rising.
“But the real question for this business is what happens if further restrictions are required going into the autumn. “Sensible policies” are the answer says the Wetherspoons boss, not a return to lockdowns or the tier system. As for most of the economy, this is a business that is relying on the speed and efficacy of the vaccine rollout.”