Only 1,130 nightclubs remain in the UK, a fall of 20% on 2019, according to figures released by the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA).
The midlands and the north have been hardest hit according to the figures, with key independent businesses being lost, all of which play a role in supporting the wider UK night time economy that generates £112bn in revenue per annum.
The NTIA said the combination of pandemic debt, growing energy bills, workforce challenges, supply chain, increased insurance premiums, landlord pressures and product cost increases have created a “perfect storm”.
It said operating cost pressures coupled with consumers with less disposable income have seen slowing ticket sales and visitor frequency.
The industry is yet to see the true impact of cost inflation on businesses, with more than 53.8% of respondent businesses still to renew energy contracts.
NTIA CEO Michael Kill said, “Late night economy businesses were one of the quickest sectors to rebound during the financial crash many years ago, harbouring an abundance of resilience and entrepreneurial spirit. It’s without a doubt that these businesses, particularly nightclubs, have a huge part to play in the regeneration of high streets in towns and cities across the UK.
“Beyond the generation of footfall through trade, domestic and international visitors to clubs support the local economy in secondary and tertiary purchases through accommodation, travel and retail.
“It is also key to recognise that these businesses play a key part in people’s decision making process from choosing a university or college to influencing investment choices for businesses relocating or expanding, to accommodate for a young workforce. Not forgetting the important part they play in people’s, physical, mental and social well being.
“The Government needs to recognise the economic, cultural, and community value of clubs and the wider night time economy. We must protect these businesses, using every means possible, and recognise their importance before it’s too late.”