Staff shortage forces cuts to opening hours at Bettys tearooms

Two of Yorkshire’s Bettys tearooms have had to reduce their opening hours due to problems with recruiting enough staff.

The business has told the BBC that it had 67 vacancies across its six branches and bakery.

It said the staff shortage meant its tearooms in Harrogate and St Helen’s Square, in York, will shut four hours earlier – at 5pm instead of 9pm.

Bettys branch director Nicky Sellars said: “The lockdowns have certainly impacted recruitment in the hospitality sector.

“The pandemic created uncertainty in the industry with hospitality venues frequently having to close down their operations.

“People wanted work with more security so they have gone to jobs in other sectors.”

She added the company has had to cope without a full complement of staff, even though its café tearooms were still not at full capacity.

UKHospitality, The British Beer and Pub Association and The British Institute of Innkeeping have said July’s easing of COVID-19 lockdowns has not led to an easing of challenges for businesses they represent.

These trade associations said they continue to have “major concerns around staffing, the supply chain and tapering of Government support.”