Hospitality businesses fear the worst in the wake of 'rule of six' introduction

The hospitality sector has been showing signs of recovery over recent months but there are now worries the 'rule of six' could bring that upturn to a halt.  Credit: ITV Border

The hospitality sector has been showing signs of recovery over recent months but there are now worries the 'rule of six' could bring that upturn to a halt. 

ITV Border has been speaking to businesses in Cumbria which are already seeing more cancellations.

Brian Humes runs a cafe at Penrith Auction Mart. He also has a function room next door and does outside catering.

There are concerns that 'rule of six' could hinder caterer's chances of making up for lost income during lockdown. Credit: ITV Border

A busy September would ordinarily see him at several events a day but at the moment his outdoor catering van is his main source of income.

He did have a few bookings for bigger events but with social gatherings over six now off the table, his takings are down more than 50%.

North of the border the situation isn't much better.

In Melrose a restaurant has seen cancelled bookings after the Scottish Government further restricted how many people can gather in a group.

Restaurants fear the 'rule of six' will impact the busy Christmas party season Credit: ITV Border

Antonio Caterino, who runs Monte Cassino, believes it may be difficult for venues to police the number of households within a party.

Its not very good us. We've had a reaction already this weekend we had cancellations, people already booked even a table for four for five because it was for different households, it's not very good and it doesn't look very positive for Christmas as well because our Christmas is party time and so far we never have any bookings I'm a concerned

Antonio Caterino, Monte Cassino restaurant

With Christmas set to become the latest event in the diary to be impacted by the ongoing pandemic, there are concerns that measures like the rule of six could dash businesses hopes of clawing back income over the busy Christmas party season.