Mayor of London urges office workers back to enjoy hospitality
Future Cities Forum is following the cultural recovery of the UK following the pandemic which has hit theatres, clubs, evening retail and hospitality hard.
This week, we will be hearing from the Commissioner for Cultural Recovery at the DCMS, Lord Mendoza, about what can be done to support culture in our towns and cities as well as the high street, at our 'Cultural Cities' event in Oxford. Lord Mendoza will be answering questions around funding and the role of heritage on the high street to aid recovery.
Meanwhile, The Mayor of London, Sadiq khan, has urged the city's office workers and businesses to embrace post-pandemic hybrid working, with staff returning to offices for one or more days a week as the prospect of more after-work socialising gives London's hospitality sector a much needed boost.
'After Work Social' roundels have been installed in three central London Tube stations from today as part of TfL's 'Welcome Back London' campaign to encourage people to safely return to the public transport network.
Nearly half of all Londoners worked from home during the pandemic, according to the Office for National Statistics, and research by YouGov found that one in four businesses intend to allow all workers to work from home at least some of the time from now on.
The Mayor of London's office states however that with restrictions removed and the summer holidays coming to an end it is vital that businesses address the monumental shift in working habits that has occurred in the last 18 months, in order to support their employees and, in turn, the one in five Londoners who work in the hospitality and retail sectors.
Whilst weekend visitor numbers to central London are improving, now at around 75 per cent compared to 2019, weekday visitors are still at around 54 per cent compared to before the pandemic.
The Mayor of London has invested £7m in his 'Let's Do London' campaign - the largest domestic tourism campaign the capital has ever seen and includes a wide range of nighttime activities at Tate Modern, Science Museum and the London Dungeon. There will also be late night jazz and cabaret in the crypt of St Martin in the Fields, outdoor cinema screenings at the Barbican and a unique late night collaboration between the English National Opera and Fabric Nightclub called London Unlocked: Live.
Sadiq Khan said:
'London's recovery is vital, not only for our own economy but for that of the entire country. A key part of our recovery will be getting our world-leading hospitality sector back on its feet in a safe and sustainable way. The return of more workers to the city, alongside domestic tourists is vital to support this.'