One in three Britons vow to continue thrifty lockdown spending habits


One in three Britons are vowing to continue money-saving habits created by lockdown and reduce the amount of time they spend eating out in UK restaurants. 

New data published by online bank Marcus by Goldman Sachs also reveal that one in five Britons have slashed spending on takeaways while 25 per cent of people surveyed have said they will carry on doing more home-cooking going forward.

The shock survey a blow to the Government’s efforts to kickstart the UK economy after being effectively mothballed during the pandemic. 

It also shows that it will take more than Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s hugely popular Eat Out to Help Out scheme to revive Britain’s hospitality sector. 

Meanwhile, 12 per cent polled said they will not return to indoor gyms, having bought home equipment and paid for online fitness subscriptions.

Eleven per cent claim they will not go back to beauty salons, while 25 per cent of all surveyed are choosing not to spend as much on clothes in future.

And 18 per cent admit they will not go on holidays abroad as regularly as they were pre-coronavirus in light of the Government’s quarantine list.  

Of those who have managed to save more money than usual during lockdown, 29 per cent said they have put away around £340 more than they normally would.

One in three Britons are vowing to continue money-saving habits created by lockdown and reduce the amount of time they spend eating out in UK restaurants (pictured: restaurants and cafes in Church Street, Twickenham on the last day of the Eat Out scheme on Monday)

New data published by a Goldman Sachs-affiliated bank also reveal that one in five Britons have slashed spending on takeaways while 25 per cent of people surveyed have said they will carry on doing more home-cooking going forward (pictured: Eat Out diners on Monday)

New data published by a Goldman Sachs-affiliated bank also reveal that one in five Britons have slashed spending on takeaways while 25 per cent of people surveyed have said they will carry on doing more home-cooking going forward (pictured: Eat Out diners on Monday)

So much for getting back to the office! Day two of Britain’s big back-to-work drive and roads and trains look ominously empty 

Britain’s roads and railways were still almost empty today as the drive to get workers back to offices following the summer holidays stalled again.

While some London Underground trains were beginning to look busier during rush hour this morning, hardly anyone was to be seen arriving at major terminals in the capital including Waterloo and Paddington.

Commuters travelling into London on train lines such as Great Western Railway and Southeastern also tweeted photographs of near-empty carriages, while pictures of the M40 during rush hour also showed very light traffic.

London transport networks are barely busier than last week, with Tube use yesterday still more than 70 per cent down on this time last year. Buses in the capital are now carrying only half their usual numbers. 

Not eating out so often (60 per cent) and not spending money at bars and pubs (49 per cent) are apparently the most common reasons people have been saving money.

The survey also found that 18 to 34-year-olds are most likely to continue the money saving habits they have picked up over the past few months. 

New saving habits created by the lockdown are already impacting Britain’s restaurants, which were deserted yesterday just 24 hours after the Chancellor’s popular Eat Out to Help Out scheme came to an end. 

Mr Sunak’s programme encouraged millions of diners to eat out at discounted prices in select UK restaurants at a cost of £400million to the taxpayer.

But photos published by MailOnline yesterday showed that Britons, accustomed to saving money during lockdown, stopped eating as soon as the scheme ended.

Images of the same venues which contrasted deserted restaurants on Tuesday with the same previously packed out venues on Monday sparked fears that London’s West End could lose £10billion a year and 50,000 jobs as tourism collapses. 

Nickie Aiken, Tory MP for Cities of London and Westminster, said 50,000 people in the capital’s retail sector face losing their jobs due to the lack of visitors.

‘Almost half of the £10billion annual spend in the West End is from overseas travellers and then the lack of office workers who have not been back at their desks since March, that has a huge effect on the overall turnover of West End shops and hospitality,’ she told BBC Radio 4’s Today show yesterday.

‘Between about 70 to 80 per cent – you’re basically looking at about 50,000 job losses retail job losses in West End retail alone.’ 

The West End today was deserted
Bustling West End scenes last night

What a difference a day makes: The packed streets of Monday were left abandoned in just 24 hours in the West End

Staying away: Many took part in the Eat Out to Help Out scheme (left) but by yesterday (right) the same places were very quiet

Some roads had been shut for the weekend they were so busy but by yesterday may of them were completely empty

AstraZeneca begins final trials of Oxford University coronavirus vaccine enrolling 50,000 people 

The world may be one step closer to getting a coronavirus jab after Oxford University’s vaccine candidate entered its final stage of tests in the US.

UK drug giant AstraZeneca, which owns the rights to the vaccine, said it had enrolled 30,000 American volunteers to take part in its phase three clinical trial.

It now means 50,000 people worldwide are taking part in studies to see whether the jab – known as AZD1222 – can actually prevent people getting infected with Covid-19.

Thousands of volunteers have already been injected with the experimental drug in the UK, Brazil and South Africa and are being monitored by scientists.

Oxford’s Professor Sarah Gilbert, the brains behind the jab, said preliminary data from trials in these countries could be expected in the coming weeks.

Cambridge-based AstraZeneca said further trials are planned in Japan, where there has been a deadly second wave, and Russia, where there have been a million cases.

AstraZeneca and Oxford scientists have repeatedly promised to deliver the vaccine to the most vulnerable groups to Covid-19 by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, the British drugmaker yesterday struck a £15million deal with Oxford Biomedica to mass-produce the vaccine if it is proven to be effective.

Gene and cell therapy firm Oxford Biomedica will be the sole manufacturer of the vaccine in Britain for 18 months.

AstraZeneca has also struck deals with manufacturers in China, the US, and across Europe as it looks to supply the entire world with the Oxford jab.

Oxford Biomedica says it will receive £15m as a capacity reservation fee, plus as much as £35m to make multiple large-scale batches of the vaccine if it works.

Early trials have shown promising results, with tests showing the vaccine is safe to use in humans and appears to provoke an immune response. But data that proves it protects people is not expected until later this year.

To prove without doubt that it protects people from infection, vaccines need to go through rigorous phase three trials.

 

She added: ‘We’ve got to get that back, we’ve got to get businesses, the Mayor of London and Government to work together to provide that confidence to get people back in.’

The doomsday-style predictions came as Edinburgh said it had seen a two million slump in visitor numbers in August.

Hospitality chiefs said the absence of 25,000 performers and the demise of ‘the after-work pint’ contributed to the fall.

The number of people on the streets of the Scottish capital was down to 700,000 in August compared to 2.7million in the same month last year.

The Edinburgh Hotels Association said the average occupancy was down to just 50 per cent in August – at a time when they would normally be almost full.

The average price of a hotel room was just £76 – down 52 per cent on the same period in 2019 – as prices were slashed to try to drum up business.

Association chiefs described the situation as ‘much worse than expected’.

City centre leaders said the many businesses are now in ‘survival mode’ following the ‘double whammy’ of the festivals cancellation and the lack of office workers.

Among the sectors hardest hit in the London economy have been the tourism industry and the arts.

London’s visitors make up 53 per cent of all inbound visitors to the UK, but travel restrictions combined with high Coronavirus cases have made it an unattractive option for travellers.  

Visit Britain had predicted pre-pandemic that people from abroad using the UK tourism industry would bring in £30.3billion.

But when the pandemic hit it downgraded its total to £10.6billion. 

The New West End Company has also said that the number of people visiting the area increased when non-essential retail stores reopened on June 15, but was still half of what was expected.

Experts in the group, which acts for 600 retailers and landlords in Oxford Street, Bond Street, Regent Street and Mayfair, believe there will be a £5billion drop in retail sales.

Last month MailOnline told how lost fare revenue would leave TfL needing an estimated £3.5billion for the year despite a £1.6billion government bailout in May and Sadiq Khan’s decision to increase the congestion charge by £4.50 to £15 a day. Tube and bus fare revenues were down 90% at the height of the lockdown.

London Councils have also lost out on £1.4billion thanks to lost income from council tax, business rates and charges for council services while each borough’s spending on services during lockdown has gone up.

The Greater London Authority, which is mainly funded by government grants, has also suffered a £493million from the loss of its share of tax revenue.

Law firm Irwin Mitchell and the Centre for Economics & Business Research estimated London businesses were losing £575million a day at the height of lockdown. 

Even popular fast food giants were shunned by London visitors and tourists, despite the capital’s sunny weather

Only two diners could be seen at McDonald's restaurant in the West End on the day workers were urged to go back to work

Only two diners could be seen at McDonald’s restaurant in the West End on the day workers were urged to go back to work

The Eat Out to Help Out scheme saw millions return to dining out as restaurants but they were in short supply yesterday

The Eat Out to Help Out scheme saw millions return to dining out as restaurants but they were in short supply yesterday

Their findings suggest that each day, London hotels, restaurants and pubs lost £54.7million a day in revenue, professional services in the City lost £50million a day, financial services £50million and arts, entertainment and recreation £31.9million.

Their estimations project a £66.9billion impact to London’s GDP in lost revenue over the course of the pandemic to date. 

New saving habits created by the lockdown have also hit one of Britain’s biggest gym operators, as The Gym Group announced seeing revenues cut by half.

The company, which operates 183 gyms across the UK, said that it made ‘virtually no revenue’ after shutting sites at the end of March.

Revenues fell by 49.6 per cent to £37.2million for the six months to July 30 as the firm swung to a pre-tax loss of £26.9million for the period – dropping from £5.5million profit from the same period in 2019.

However, member numbers and gym usage have grown since reopening to customers on English sites on July 25 ‘as member confidence increases’ following the introduction of Covid-safe measures, The Gym Group said. 

In the first five weeks of trading since reopening, the number of new customers was up 30 per cent year-on-year while cancellations were up six per cent against 2019. 

In the first five weeks of trading since reopening, the number of new customers was up 30 per cent year-on-year while cancellations were up six per cent against 2019. 

The Gym Group saw revenues cut by half and swung to a loss in the past six months after it closed branches during the coronavirus lockdown (pictured: Boris Johnson lifting a few rounds of weights at a branch of The Gym Group in his South Ruislip constituency, August 6, 2020)

The Gym Group saw revenues cut by half and swung to a loss in the past six months after it closed branches during the coronavirus lockdown (pictured: Boris Johnson lifting a few rounds of weights at a branch of The Gym Group in his South Ruislip constituency, August 6, 2020)

The company, which operates 183 gyms across the UK, said it made 'virtually no revenue' after shutting sites at the end of March (pictured: Boris Johnson taking a tour of a branch of The Gym Group in his South Ruislip constituency, August 6, 2020)

The company, which operates 183 gyms across the UK, said it made ‘virtually no revenue’ after shutting sites at the end of March (pictured: Boris Johnson taking a tour of a branch of The Gym Group in his South Ruislip constituency, August 6, 2020)

Chief executive Richard Darwin said: 'Following our decisive actions during lockdown to minimise costs and secure additional liquidity, we have reopened as the strongest capitalised company in the sector (pictured: The Gym Group in Lewisham seen with shut doors)

Chief executive Richard Darwin said: ‘Following our decisive actions during lockdown to minimise costs and secure additional liquidity, we have reopened as the strongest capitalised company in the sector (pictured: The Gym Group in Lewisham seen with shut doors)

Chief executive Richard Darwin said: ‘Following our decisive actions during lockdown to minimise costs and secure additional liquidity, we have reopened as the strongest capitalised company in the sector.

‘We anticipate the long-term structural growth of low-cost gyms will continue to be driven by the underlying interest in health and fitness, which is accelerating as a result of Covid-19 and the Government’s initiative to reduce obesity.

‘With the likelihood of a challenging economic environment in the coming months, gym-goers will increasingly look for great value and as the lowest-priced high-quality gym operator we are well placed to meet this demand.’

All the company’s gyms have reopened. It welcomed customers back in England in late July before its Welsh and Scottish sites received the green light. 

Up in the North of England, leisure centres in Newcastle have announced plans to remain shut indefinitely, with at least 35 staff set to lose their jobs.  

The Eldon Leisure Centre inside Eldon Square, the West Denton Swimming Pool, and Walker Activity Dome will not be reopening for the foreseeable future, operator Greenwich Leisure Ltd (GLL) has confirmed.

The non-profit organisation said that it had been ‘impossible’ to recoup losses caused by the coronavirus lockdown and the requirement to operate venues with reduced capacity in order to comply with social distancing. It is expected that 40 per cent of GLL’s permanent staff in Newcastle will lose their jobs as a result.

However, member numbers and gym usage have grown since reopening to customers on English sites on July 25 'as member confidence increases' following the introduction of Covid-safe measures (pictured: Boris Johnson lifting a few rounds of weights at a branch of The Gym Group in his South Ruislip constituency, August 6, 2020)

However, member numbers and gym usage have grown since reopening to customers on English sites on July 25 ‘as member confidence increases’ following the introduction of Covid-safe measures (pictured: Boris Johnson lifting a few rounds of weights at a branch of The Gym Group in his South Ruislip constituency, August 6, 2020)

'Out Of Use' markers on exercise machines and a protective screen inside the Gym Group in Vauxhall, after it was announced that gyms will be allowed to reopen from July 25, 2020

‘Out Of Use’ markers on exercise machines and a protective screen inside the Gym Group in Vauxhall, after it was announced that gyms will be allowed to reopen from July 25, 2020

GLL also runs the East End Pool, Gosforth Leisure Centre, and the Newcastle Trampoline Park and Gym – all of which will remain open with ‘modified’ hours.

Outdoor football pitches at the Walker Activity Dome will also continue to operate, as will the other facilities at West Denton Leisure Centre aside from the pool.

Newcastle City Council confirmed that it has issued GLL with a loan from an emergency £5m fund set up to help businesses through the Covid-19 crisis but it is not enough to keep every leisure centre open.

GLL was handed control of most of the city’s council-run leisure facilities as part of civic centre budget cuts in recent years.

It was forced to ask local councils for financial help earlier this year to help it cope with the devastating impact of the pandemic. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk