Latest figures have revealed that the government’s Eat Out To Help Out initiative was used to help pay for almost 11 million meals in its first week.
HM Revenue and Customs, which is administering discount claims by restaurants, pubs and cafes, has announced that it had received requests totalling around £50m towards 10.5 million meals under the scheme so far in the first week.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said people were supporting the initiative in “big numbers”.
Under the Eat Out To Help Out scheme – announced by Rishi Sunak as part of the UK government’s #PlanForJobs – visitors will receive a 50% discount, up to a maximum of £10 per person, when dining-in at participating venues on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout 3rd – 31st August.
This unmissable offer – which can be used on more than one occasion and will see participating establishments simply remove the discount from customers’ bills – is available on food and non-alcoholic beverages, but does not include takeaway purchases.
The scheme was designed to encourage people to dine-in and support their favourite local hangouts.
Participating venues can then receive the discount back through claims submitted to HMRC, and payouts should take no longer than five working days.
It’s believed that over 73,000 hospitality businesses across the UK have signed up to participate in the scheme.
Retail industry figures have also credited a “boost” from Eat Out To Help Out after seeing a rise of almost 19% on visits to high streets after 6pm between Monday and Wednesday last week, compared to the previous week.
There has however been discussion around whether the scheme will take demand away during weekends and traditional busy periods.
Diane Wehrle – Insights Director at Springboard – said: “The jury is still out regarding the benefit of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme which launched last week, although there were rises in footfall on each day between Monday and Wednesday from the week before.”
“It is clear that it was the post-6pm period that yielded the greatest rise in footfall, and also that smaller towns benefited more than large city centres.”
“As the scheme continues throughout August and more Brits enjoy staycations across the UK, time will tell if the government scheme provides the boost that retail destinations across the country require for business survival.”
You can find venues near you participating in the Eat Out To Help Out scheme here.
For further information and guidance amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, do refer to official sources via gov.uk/coronavirus.
The COVID-19 pandemic may have taken its toll on industries of all shapes and sizes over these past few months, but supporting local/independent business has never been more important than it is right now.
He was banned, then apologised, and now all seems to be forgiven.
But the internet does not forgive so easily.
At the time of writing, England vs USA is drawn 0-0.
Here are some of the tweets that sum up why James Corden is trending tonight:
You can buy half Christmas trees so you don’t have to decorate the full thing
December is nearly ready for rolling around once again.
It’s time to reach out the decorations out and get into the festive spirit, but for those who’d consider themselves a bit lazy, there’s an invention that could be a life saver, and it’s quite honestly genius.
You can now buy ‘half Christmas trees’ – otherwise known as or ‘against the wall Christmas trees’.
Unless your tree’s going to placed in front of a street-facing window for rafts of passers-by to see on a daily basis, it can be really tempting to just not decorate the back of it at all, right? The faff off trying to evenly-distribute strings of lights, tinsel and baubles around a full tree is often a lot more trouble than it’s worth, especially when it’s not going to be properly seen anyway.
Some would probably say it’s pointless, and it’s this thought that has presumably prompted companies to start selling these ‘half Christmas trees’.
If you’re wondering what a ‘half Christmas tree’ is, it’s basically exactly as it sounds – half a tree.
Half Christmas trees – which are also a great option for those with slightly less space to dedicate to seasonal decorations – are available in various places, and for all manner of budgets, so it should be fairly easy to get your hands on one this festive season.
According to the product description on the Very website: “This may look like a regular Christmas tree, but it’s been cleverly designed so that one side is completely flat, so no matter how limited your space might be, you and your family can still enjoy the magic of having a tree in your home,”
“Standing an impressive 6ft tall and featuring 511 tips for a lush look, you can stand it flat against the wall to save on valuable floor space,
“It also means you don’t have to worry about any of your favourite decorations being out of sight at the back”.
If you’re looking for something a little cheaper though, then there’s plenty of different options available on eBay and Amazon too, and our pick for this would be the vidaXL Artificial Half Christmas Tree – which is currently being sold on eBay by a number of different sellers for prices starting at £24.