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Bars, cafes and restaurants across the UK are continuing to report a lack of staff with many having to operate reduced hours because of the shortages.
A BBC report has highlighted one London-located Michelin-star restaurant that can no longer open at lunchtimes because few of its former staff are available to work.
The founder of Pied à Terre in Charlotte Street, London, David Moore, said the move was necessary to “preserve” his depleted workforce.
He told the broadcaster: “If I slog them to death, in two weeks' time, I won't have a restaurant.”
Moore said 800 people applied for a receptionist role in November 2020, but only received seven responses when he re-advertised for the role three weeks ago, and no one made it to the interview.
“I don't know anybody who is not looking for a kitchen porter,” he added.
He said Brexit was “definitely the biggest” factor behind staff shortages, and he said the hospitality industry in the UK had depended to a large extent on young people coming from abroad to work in restaurants and bars to gain life experience and new skills.
“[The government] don't realise the huge commodity we have that they have excluded us from, that keeps this industry moving more than anything else,” he told the BBC.
Prior to the pandemic just three out of his 30-strong workforce were from the UK. His restaurant currently has 12 staff.
He said some workers who were furloughed during loc