Butlin’s expects to lose 1,000s of jobs when furlough ends

Butlins Holiday Camps expect to see the loss of thousands of jobs when the furlough ends in October, a company spokesman says.

Holiday camp operator Butlin’s has yet to tell 1,000 of it’s furloughed workers what their future is when the government’s wage subsidy scheme ends next month. A leaked document sent to staff suggests employees either take paid holiday if they have any remaining or unpaid leave if not.

A spokesman said: “Our aim is to get all of our team back to work as soon as we can. “We’re disappointed in the irresponsible nature of the BBC’s report about job losses at Butlin’s. We are working closely with UK Hospitality and the government to understand the implications of these constantly changing national circumstances.”

Butlin’s is currently operating at 50% capacity and is heading into the winter months when income falls significantly. It said no decision had been made about workers on the government scheme. The company said: “Since we reopened Butlin’s we’ve worked hard to bring back as many of our team as possible whilst ensuring we’re safe and secure. There has been no decision made regarding our team who are still furloughed.”

Butlins Holiday Camps enjoyed a recent burst of activity in August as the UK government introduced quarantine measures for Spain, sparking off an unprecedented level od so-called ‘stay-cations’.

Butlin’s employs over 6,000 employees and is owned by Bourne Leisure Group which also operates Haven caravan parks and Warner Leisure Hotels. In total, the group employs more than 15,000 members of staff. Before the government announced the furlough scheme, the group had already warned that 10,000 jobs would be axed as a result of lockdown.

It has since benefited from hundreds of millions of pounds in government support through loans, furlough and deferred VAT and business rates. In 2019, Bourne Leisure paid out over €67.2m (£60m) to the three families that own the businesses, the Allen, Cook and Harris families. Thousands of jobs are now expected to be lost when government support ends on October 31 and the furlough ends.

 

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Written by

Tony Winterburn

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