Credit: Becca Luke

83% of nightlife businesses are set to make staff redundancies within weeks

By Lauren Brooks

Nightlife businesses are a major employer of students and remain closed due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Glasgow’s nightlife businesses are set to make major staff redundancies within a matter of weeks.

Many students with part-time jobs in the nightlife industry are at risk of losing them, with 83% of businesses set to make staff redundant as a result of Covid-19.

Due to a lack of government support the night-time economy has been warned of “financial armageddon”. Unlike other industries with schemes such as “eat out to help out” the night-time sector has not been as well supported.

The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) is leading calls for an extension to the job-retention scheme which is set to end in October. According to an NTIA survey, 76% of these businesses will make over half their workforce redundant within a few weeks, and 58% of the businesses within Scotland’s night-time economy fear they won’t last another two months without government support.

If the government fails to help the nightlife economy, it will greatly affect students since many are employed by the nightlife industry. It is a popular employment option for students as shifts do not clash with studies and there are many jobs available due to Glasgow’s vast nightlife.

Without the government extending this job-retention scheme, many students will struggle to fund their studies in Glasgow. A Save the Student survey found that 79% of students struggle to get by and many need part-time work to help pay for rent, food, and to fund their social lives.

Geoff Ellis, CEO of DF Concerts, said in a statement to NTIA: “The night-time entertainment sector is vital for the economic prosperity and cultural vibrancy of our towns and cities as well as for the health and wellbeing of those who live, work, study and visit them.”

The announcement of lockdown on 23 March resulted in the immediate closure of nightclubs, late-night bars, and music venues. Yet, the government is still unclear on when and how businesses within the night-time sector can reopen. 

Donald Macleod, the owner of The Garage and Cathouse, stated to NTIA: “Scotland’s NTE (night-time economy) is a hugely important economic driver of music and cultural tourism, leisure, and business growth for our towns and cities, as well as a major national employer.

“It is only right therefore, to avoid thousands of job losses and hundreds of businesses from going under, that it is treated on par to our other art and industry sectors. It must be given the emergency Scottish government funding it so urgently requires in order to survive.”

The nightlife sector is a big employer in Glasgow’s city centre, and while many popular night-time venues such as Firewater have reopened, many like Sub Club and The Garage remain closed with no timeframe of reopening as of now.


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