Hundreds of jobs are at risk at hotels managed by LGH Hotels in England and Scotland as the company looks to cut costs in response to the coronavirus crisis.
LGH Hotels Management runs 47 hotels under brands including Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza and Hallmark from Aberdeen to Guildford and is understood to employ 2,500 staff.
LGH described the impact of Covid-19 on the business as “dramatic” and said it did not expect hotel occupancy to rise above 20% of capacity for the remainder of 2020.
M&Co – 400 jobs
5 August: M&Co., the Renfrewshire-based clothing retailer, formerly known as Mackays, will close 47 of 215 stores.
WH Smith – 1,500 jobs
5 August: The chain, which sells products ranging from sandwiches to stationery, will cut jobs mainly in UK railway stations and airports.
Pizza Express – 1,100 jobs
4 August: The restaurant chain plans the closure of 70 restaurants as part of a rescue restructure deal.
Dixons Carphone – 800 jobs
4 August: Electronics retailer Dixons Carphone is cutting 800 managers in its stores as it continues to reduce costs.
DW Sports – 1,700 jobs at risk
3 August: DW Sports fell into administration, closing its retail website immediately and risking the closure of its 150 gyms and shops.
Marks & Spencer – 950 jobs
20 July: The high street stalwart cuts management jobs in stores as well as head office roles related to property and store operations.
Ted Baker – 500 jobs
19 July: About 200 roles to go at the fashion retailer’s London headquarters, the Ugly Brown Building, and the remainder at stores.
Azzurri – 1,200 jobs
17 July: The owner of the Ask Italian and Zizzi pizza chains closes 75 restaurants and makes its Pod lunch business delivery only
Burberry – 500 jobs worldwide
15 July: Total includes 150 posts in UK head offices as luxury brand tries to slash costs by £55m after a slump in sales during the pandemic.
Boots – 4,000 jobs
9 July: Boots is cutting 4,000 jobs – or 7% of its workforce – by closing 48 opticians outlets and reducing staff at its head office in Nottingham as well as some management and customer service roles in stores.
John Lewis – 1,300 jobs
9 July: John Lewis announced that it is planning to permanently close eight of its 50 stores, including full department stores in Birmingham and Watford, with the likely loss of 1,300 jobs.
Celtic Manor – 450 jobs
9 July: Bosses at the Celtic Collection in Newport, which staged golf's Ryder Cup in 2010 and the 2014 Nato Conference, said 450 of its 995 workers will lose their jobs.
Pret a Manger – 1,000 jobs
6 July: Pret a Manger is to permanently close 30 branches and could cut at least 1,000 jobs after suffering “significant operating losses” as a result of the Covid-19 lockdown
Casual Dining Group – 1,900 jobs
2 July: The owner of the Bella Italia, Café Rouge and Las Iguanas restaurant chains collapsed into administration, with the immediate loss of 1,900 jobs. The company said multiple offers were on the table for parts of the business but buyers did not want to acquire all the existing sites and 91 of its 250 outlets would remain permanently closed.
Arcadia – 500 jobs
1 July: Arcadia, Sir Philip Green’s troubled fashion group – which owns Topshop, Miss Selfridge, Dorothy Perkins, Burton, Evans and Wallis – said in July 500 head office jobs out of 2,500 would go in the coming weeks.
SSP Group – 5,000 jobs
1 July: The owner of Upper Crust and Caffè Ritazza is to axe 5,000 jobs, about half of its workforce, with cuts at its head office and across its UK operations after the pandemic stalled domestic and international travel.
Harrods – 700 jobs
1 July: The department store group is cutting one in seven of its 4,800 employees because of the “ongoing impacts” of the pandemic.
Harveys – 240 jobs
30 June: Administrators made 240 redundancies at the furniture chain Harveys, with more than 1,300 jobs at risk if a buyer cannot be found.
TM Lewin – 600 jobs
30 June: Shirtmaker TM Lewin closed all 66 of its outlets permanently, with the loss of about 600 jobs.
Monsoon Accessorize – 545 jobs
11 June: The fashion brands were bought out of administration by their founder, Peter Simon, in June, in a deal in which 35 stores closed permanently and 545 jobs were lost.
Mulberry – 470 jobs
8 June: The luxury fashion and accessories brand is to cut 25% of its global workforce and has started a consultation with the 470 staff at risk.
The Restaurant Group – 3,000 jobs
3 June: The owner of dining chains such as Wagamama and Frankie & Benny’s has closed most branches of Chiquito and all 11 of its Food & Fuel pubs, with another 120 restaurants to close permanently. Total job losses could reach 3,000.
Clarks – 900 jobs
21 May: Clarks plans to cut 900 office jobs worldwide as it grapples with the growth of online shoe shopping as well as the pandemic.
Oasis and Warehouse – 1,800 jobs
30 April: The fashion brands were bought out of administration by the restructuring firm Hilco in April, with all of their stores permanently closed and 1,800 jobs lost.
Cath Kidston – 900 jobs
21 April: More than 900 jobs were cut immediately at the retro retail label Cath Kidston after the company said it was permanently closing all 60 of its UK stores.
Debenhams – 4,000 jobs
9 April: At least 4,000 jobs will be lost at Debenhams in its head office and closed stores after its collapse into administration in April, for the second time in a year.
Laura Ashley – 2,700 jobs
17 March: Laura Ashley collapsed into administration, with 2,700 job losses, and said rescue talks had been thwarted by the pandemic.
The company told staff: “Unfortunately, we see no signs that we will be able to support the return of our existing teams across our portfolio for the foreseeable future.”
LGH is in consultation with staff over the planned redundancies and hopes to make some job cuts through voluntary redundancies.
Staff at the Holiday Inn Glasgow Airport, which has been shut since March, were informed in a presentation by the hotel’s general manager Denis McCann in late July that 88 out of 92 workers were at risk of redundancy.
The hotel is due to reopen in September with a skeleton staff, with only four senior managers to be retained. The remaining 88 workers have been told they can apply for seven to 10 new “hospitality service expert” roles, which will require employees to work flexibly in all areas of the hotel.
One hotel employee, who did not want to give their name, complained that the company had not contacted workers during four months of furlough until they were informed about the planned redundancies.
“There was no compassion, there was no remorse,” said the worker, who has been at the hotel for five years. “I’m just a number to them, but this is people’s livelihoods, people have got kids to look after, they’ve got roofs to keep over their heads.”
Bryan Simpson, an organiser at the Unite union, said members at Holiday Inn hotels were fighting against compulsory redundancies and would put forward alternative proposals.
“LGH want to sack 95% of workers and then have them to fight it out for less than a dozen ‘hospitality service expert’ roles who will be expected to be ‘fully flexible’ across all departments and shifts,” Simpson said. He warned that the company could damage its reputation with its redundancy plans.
Simon Teasdale, the chief executive of LGH Hotels Management, said the company was holding “intensive talks” with staff in order to “master the Covid-19 situation”.
“We are endeavouring to protect the interests of the employees and our company as best we can. Since the occupancy rate of hotels in the face of the pandemic necessitates capacity adjustments, we are currently reviewing all options for ensuring the company’s continued success,” he said. He refused to comment further on the talks.
The proposed job cuts at LGH are the latest in a string of redundancies announced in the hospitality sector, including planned redundancies at 19 hotels in England and Scotland directly managed or leased by Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG).
The decision by Pizza Express on Tuesday to close restaurants and slash more than 1,000 roles takes the total number of jobs lost in eateries and other food outlets in the last few months to 17,000.
The pub chain Wetherspoons has told head office staff that nearly a third of them – up to 130 people – are at risk of redundancy as it adjusts to the post-pandemic trading environment.
The chief executive, John Hutson, said: “The decision is mainly a result of a downturn in trade in the pub and restaurant industry generally, a reduction in the company’s rate of expansion and a reduction in the number of pubs operated from 955 in 2015 to 873 today.
“We should emphasise that no firm decisions have been made at this stage. All head office employees will be affected by the process, with the exception of those working directly in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.”
Hutson said the company would try to redeploy people to its pubs, whose staff would not be affected by the cuts, and would seek to avoid compulsory job losses where possible, with early retirements and improved departure terms for those who take voluntary redundancy.