Hospitality will lead economic recovery, say business leaders

Most UK business leaders expect the leisure and hospitality industries to drive the economic recovery according to a new report.

Barclays Corporate Business in 2021 research found that more than three quarters of all industry see hospitality and leisure as the main growth sectors in their region.

However, somewhat ironically, London, with all its event venues was not as optimistic that hospitality was the answer. Big Hospitality reports that just 57 per cent of London and South East firms said hospitality would drive the economic recovery compared to 95 per cent of Scottish businesses.

Although Mike Saul, head of hospitality and leisure at Barclays Corporate, disagreed with this particular statistic. He argues that the Olympics and its legacy should play a major part in the recovery.

View the flexible event spaces at The Brewery.

“The industry sees itself playing an important role in this growth, and clearly the boost from next year’s Olympics, and its ongoing legacy will play a major part in this,” he said in a statement cited by

He also stated that there has been a lot of investment activity from foreign businesses into new London hotels in the last 18 months.

Contemplating the wider picture, Saul said: “It is clear that the majority of the UK’s hospitality and leisure sector believes in the fundamental strength of the UK as a place to do business, and this underlines the temporary nature of the challenges that we are currently experiencing.

“To see the majority of businesses anticipating steady and sustained economic growth over the next decade should also be welcome news for a government that is focused on developing a growth strategy,” he added.

In addition, the report found that 52 per cent of the leisure and hospitality businesses surveyed expect a steady and sustained growth over the next 10 years. Just 39 per cent expect zero or negative growth.