Tom Kerridge reveals despair at 700% increase in cost of electricity at his pub and warns government

Tom Kerridge reveals despair at 700% increase in cost of electricity at his pub and warns the government must act ‘quite rapidly’ to save hospitality industry

  • The chef’s pub The Hand and Flowers in Marlow received the 700% quote
  • He said the Government needs to rapidly introduce a price cap for businesses
  • Energy prices continue to soar amid the ongoing cost of living crisis
  • But businesses are still facing a wait for details about additional support

Top chef Tom Kerridge has revealed his despair at facing a near 700 per cent surge in electricity costs for his restaurant business as energy prices continue to soar amid the ongoing cost of living crisis.

The Michelin-starred chef said his pub The Hand and Flowers, located in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, recently received a quote for its electricity bill that had rocketed close to 700 per cent, as Britain’s hospitality sector faces financial ruin this winter.

Mr Kerridge, who owns three pubs based in Marlow as well as five other restaurants and bars, also warned the Government that it needs to rapidly introduce a price cap for businesses to save the hospitality industry.

With some 48 per cent of adults finding it ‘very or somewhat difficult’ to afford their energy costs, according to the Office for National Statistics, the new UK Prime Minister Liz Truss has announced long-awaited plans to tackle soaring energy bills, which included freezing prices for two years and declaring she will boost domestic energy supplies.

But businesses are still facing a wait for details about additional support.

Many British pubs are reducing their hours and closing down as energy bills skyrocket by tens of thousands of pounds. Landlords are describing the situation as ‘an even bigger crisis than Covid’ and are reporting 400 per cent increases in the price of their bills, costs they are largely unable to cut as they require the fuel to serve customers.

Top chef Tom Kerridge (pictured) has revealed his despair at facing a near 700 per cent surge in electricity costs for his restaurant business as energy prices continue to soar amid the ongoing cost of living crisis

Top chef Tom Kerridge (pictured) has revealed his despair at facing a near 700 per cent surge in electricity costs for his restaurant business as energy prices continue to soar amid the ongoing cost of living crisis

The Michelin-starred chef said his pub The Hand and Flowers (pictured), located in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, recently received a quote for its electricity bill that had rocketed close to 700 per cent, as Britain's hospitality sector faces financial ruin this winter

The Michelin-starred chef said his pub The Hand and Flowers (pictured), located in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, recently received a quote for its electricity bill that had rocketed close to 700 per cent, as Britain’s hospitality sector faces financial ruin this winter

Mr Kerridge, a judge on Great British Menu, told GB News: ‘The whole of hospitality is facing a very, very difficult time at the minute.

‘There’s lots of talk that seven out of ten pubs are not going to survive unless the government does something quite rapidly and announce how they’re going to help with the cost of the energy crisis.

‘There’s many small and wonderful pubs dotted up and down the country, in the centre of towns where the landlord lives upstairs.

‘They may well eke out a bit of a living and may make £25-30,000 pounds a year, just about.

‘But if you’ve got electricity bills that are doubling, trebling, three or four times it’s so hard. Our first quote for our electricity bill at the pub that I’m sitting in right now, it has gone up nearly 700 per cent.’

And Mr Kerridge predicted little hope for improved circumstances in the near future, predicting ‘a very, very difficult couple of years’.

In the interview during Breakfast with Eamonn Holmes and Isabel Webster, he said: ‘Obviously, we haven’t decided what to do, we’re still looking around.

‘But in those small pubs where the landlord makes a little bit of a living, if all of a sudden they’ve got an increase of 50, 60, £70,000 a year, then there’s no way those pubs are going to be able to operate.

‘We need to look at what that business price cap is and unfortunately the supply chain also has that problem.

‘The butchers, the fishmongers, the farmers, the veg growers – it is inevitable with food inflation that costs go up.

‘And at the same time, the guests and the consumer at home has less money because of that food inflation and price inflation, it kind of like pulls everything apart.

‘It’s going to be a very, very difficult couple of years.’

The celebrity chef revealed earlier this month that the electricity bill at one of his pubs was set to soar from £60,000 to a staggering £420,000 a year, after he was quoted a rise from £5,000 to £30,000 a month at one of his businesses.

He said the quote had come from his existing electricity supplier for when the contract ends in December, adding that he was worried because many of his appliances use electricity – including the stoves, the ovens and the fridges.

President of the British Chambers of Commerce, Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith, warned at the beginning of September that two-thirds of pubs are at risk of closure amid the energy price rise crisis.

Mr Kerridge said he would shop around to try and get his bill lowered but said from his first quote the annual sum ‘has gone from ‘£60,000 a year to £420,000 a year’.

‘It’s just absolutely ludicrous and that’s just us as a business. This is every business – every business is getting quoted that because there is no price cap on business energy,’ Mr Kerridge told BBC Radio 5 Live.

‘The numbers are so ridiculous and ludicrous that no wonder so many businesses are closing and talking of closing.’

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