North East businesses concerned about impact of second lockdown

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North East businesses that rely on self-employed workers have told ITV News they are concerned about the impact of a second lockdown.

Business owners in the North East, who rely on self-employed workers, have told ITV News Tyne Tees they are concerned about the financial impact of a second coronavirus lockdown.

The region will join the rest of England in a month long lockdown, which includes closing down pubs, restaurants, gyms, non-essential shops and places of worship. 

The new national restrictions will come into place on Thursday following a debate and vote in Parliament.

Newcastle gym owner James Brown said his business only just survived the first lockdown earlier this year. 

The 60 Smarter Gym can survive the initial one month of stricter Covid measures, but he said he is reliant on his self-employed personal trainers also gaining individual support outside the furlough system.

They pay us rent to rent our facility. If they're unable to continue their coaching, then we also lose even further so it's just like a chain reaction that's just going to really mess up the whole business I guess. If this does prolong more than the four weeks then there's a strong chance we may have to shut down the gym.

James Brown, 60 Smarter Gym

Mayor of Middlesbrough, Andy Preston, told ITV News that he welcomes the lockdown as it will help protect the NHS. 

He said the furlough extension is important for many employees in the region, but he is concerned about the workers and businesses that will be ineligible for the scheme.

There are a lot of businesses that won't benefit from the furlough and we're waiting for more info from the government on how support will work, but Middlesbrough Council for Middlesbrough based businesses will absolutely be supporting you to keep your business healthy and strong and ready for a better 2021.

Andy Preston, Mayor of Middlesbrough

The new set of restrictions will last until at least the 2 December and one hairdresser based in Durham said he thinks many employees and business owners will need to adapt their routine in order to recover from closure in November.

We can work longer hours. We could potentially work extra days, so there is something that we can all, as hairdressers, as a community to may pull together and make the best of a bad situation.

Greg Weirs, Hairdresser