Steven Hesketh
Chester-based Leading Hospitality Champion and Hotelier, Steven Hesketh aka The Hospitality Hero

Member Article

Leading Hospitality Champion and Hotelier Responds To The Spring Budget Announcement Sharing What This Means for Hospitality

"No-one is coming to Save us - We have to do this on our own!" 


In the aftermath of yesterday's Spring Budget announcement, Chester-based Leading Hospitality Champion and Hotelier, Steven Hesketh aka The Hospitality Hero, shares what this means for the hospitality industry in the North West and beyond… 


Steven said:"I wasn't massively surprised about the outcome - to be honest I wasn't holding out much hope for Government support - and I don't believe we should rely on it anyway."


Steven really has been a pivotal figure in the hospitality sector for over three decades, he is; the Chief Executive of Savvy Hotels running two hotels in Liverpool and The Townhouse in Chester, he is also the Founder and leading mentor of The Hospitality Hero, he’s a local investor and the Chair of the Chester Hospitality Association, Vice-Chair of Liverpool Hospitality Association, and a Committee Member for UK Hospitality (Northern Region)... 


Steven continues;"Whilst the decision to freeze duty on alcohol and fuel, and the small increase in the VAT threshold to £90k was appreciated, these are fairly insignificant moves. I think with this budget, the proof is in the pudding - and what’s been left out of the budget, rather than what’s been put in it, speaks volumes. Despite industry campaigning to support hospitality, it’s fallen on deaf ears… so, as I’ve always believed, we've got to do this for ourselves!” Stressing that; “No-one is coming to save us… so, we have to figure this out on our own, as a profession.“


“We must focus on service, on creating memorable experiences, and bringing the art of hospitality back, so that any spend consumers are prepared to make on leisure and escapism during these difficult times, is met with the respect it deserves. And, as a profession we need to be committed to delighting customers, as this is how we will survive, and indeed with this approach, I also believe we can thrive. We have seen that money is still there and is being spent on experiences, as the hospitality businesses at the top end are still very buoyant. I heard just this week from several high end operators at the Institute of Hospitality's Northern Conference that they are experiencing strong growth, and indeed they are investing in their businesses to accommodate this, and I think people need to hear this, to balance out the constant news about businesses in this industry failing.” 


Hesketh says that hospitality is the lifeblood of many communities and “we don't just want those at the top of the chain to be the ones that survive”, he continues; “I know, the pressure's on to deliver, over and above, no matter where you sit in the market - as this is where customers will see the true value - when they feel looked after and treated, whether that's when buying a coffee or enjoying a tasting menu - connecting back to the true art of hospitality and providing the very best service is what will bring us trust, and loyalty from customers.” 


“We must come together as consumers and operators to keep hospitality alive - and meet each other in the middle with what we both need. We all need hospitality in our lives - it is the heart of a community - and we need hospitality for local economy and place making - it's integral in so many ways."

Hesketh has just re-opened his hotel, The Townhouse in Chester, after a £200K investment in refurbishing it, and is experiencing trading figures over and above his expectations. He said: "Whilst we are most definitely feeling the pinch of all the rising costs that have been pushed upon Hospitality, and we cannot deny the economic climate is tough at the moment, I want to also offer hope that there is still opportunity to thrive.”


"On the back of this budget I urge operators and hospitality leaders to take responsibility for their own destiny, to get creative, to get focused on excellence and to collaborate and work together to support each other through our challenges. Waiting for the Government to bail us out is not the answer, we do have to work this out for ourselves. We need proactive action and discussions, for example; Business Improvement Districts for our sector, could 100% be a way to help look at Destination Management support."


Steven is passionate about bringing people from the hospitality sector together, he has launched a FREE Facebook Group online for all hospitality workers and is also all set to host his second 'The Art of Hospitality' conference on the 27th March at The Hilton, in Liverpool, an event curated to bring operators together in solidarity, and to offer insights, training, advice and networking opportunities to help people working in all levels across the profession feel supported. Speakers include; Mark Lewis, Hospitality Action’s CEO and Troy Horner, an Ambassador for The Burnt Chef Project, as well as many others. 


For tickets of more info, please reach out to Steven on LinkedIn or via the Hospitality Hero social platforms or website. 

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Chocolate PR .

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