Restaurateur Peter Kinsella says he’s been overwhelmed by the support
In response to the Chancellor’s recent announcement to introduce loans to help struggling hospitality businesses, the owner of Lunya, the Spanish and Catalonian restaurant and deli with branches in Liverpool and Manchester, penned an open letter to vent his frustration.
Peter Kinsella shared the letter on Twitter, remarking that he doubted anyone at Number 10 would see it.
The open letter, in which Mr Kinsella admitted he was crying as he wrote, has now also been featured in local and national press and television
In the heartbreakingly honest post, he points out that in the ten years his business has been open, he has ‘rightly and gladly’ paid £7.1M in taxes in addition to PAYE and NI contributions to 105 members of staff.
He explains that it looks like Lunya’s restaurants will have to shut down for up to three months and that although he is determined to do everything he can to get the business he tirelessly built back on its feet, he fears he will ‘never be able to repay’ a government loan for businesses offered in the wake of coronavirus.
To date, the post has been re-tweeted 5.8k times and has 8.1k likes. Wirral MP Alison McGovern brought the letter to the Chancellor’s attention. In response Mr Sunak promised to ‘keep the situation under review.’
The open letter, in which Mr Kinsella admitted he was crying as he wrote, has now also been featured in local and national press and television. Local news also covered a meeting Mr Kinsella had with a number of other Liverpool restaurant owners at Lu Ban to discuss plans and ideas to protect their hospitality businesses. These included offering a click-and-collect service (which Lunya is offering with its deli), running a reduced menu delivery service, or turning their businesses into takeaways.
"The government don't want people sitting in and eating. We now need to be responsible," said Kinsella.
Lunya are also selling vouchers which, Peter says, “help hugely with cash flow to pay wages. We are doing everything we can to be around when this finishes and use them.”
Here's Peter Kinsella's open letter in full:
I don’t think @10DowningStreet will ever see this, but who knows if it gets retweeted enough. A letter to the Prime Minister pic.twitter.com/6NOoh9G1h6
— Lunya Liverpool (@Lunya) March 18, 2020