Pubs will go under in mean-spirited strike

Pubs will go under in mean-spirited strike: Clive Watson says said walkouts could be ‘end of the road’ for businesses struggling from pandemic

Clive Watson, boss of the City Pub Company, has slammed the barrage of rail strikes due this week as ‘mean-spirited’. He said the walkouts could be the ‘end of the road’ for businesses still struggling in the wake of the pandemic. 

The RMT union has scheduled strikes for December 13-14 and 16-17 – which includes Friday and Saturday nights. 

Watson is the latest hospitality chief to wade into the row after complaints from Punch Taverns and Mitchells & Butlers. He said: ‘It’s the week you really make your money through the festive period. 

Festive blow: Clive Watson, with daughters Lucy and Tiffany, says pubs suffer

‘A strike day can hit business by 20 per cent or more. But when strikes are back-to-back and there’s disruption throughout the week, it can be more significant.’ 

Watson, who has appeared in the reality show Made In Chelsea alongside his daughters Lucy and Tiffany, called for a ‘Christmas truce’ similar to the downing of arms between British and German soldiers for a day in the First World War to play football. 

‘I get that employers and employees have industrial disputes. But to maximise the damage to retail and hospitality is like shooting ourselves in the foot,’ he said. 

His firm, valued on the stock exchange at £74million, runs 41 pubs in cities including London, Cambridge and Exeter.