Derby pub landlord working as delivery driver to save business

The boss of a pub in Derby has had to take a job as a delivery driver to save his business during the pandemic.

Bradley Codd, who runs The Bull And Bush in Mackworth, claimed a lack of Government support meant he was forced to choose between rental aid for his pub or a grant to support his family.

To keep his business alive and put food on the table, he has taken up a role with Amazon until lockdown restrictions are lifted.

The 22-year-old said: “I’ve had no help off the Government, it’s been terrible. The only thing I’ve had from them is the payment of my rent.

“But because I’ve had this I haven’t been able to get the Government grant for myself and my family.

“When I called up and asked, they said I could get a grant of around £250 a month but that I’d have to give up my rent support.

“That wasn’t enough to feed me, my partner and our two kids anyway, so there was no way I was taking it.

“I’ve had no choice but to take this new job, otherwise we’d be broke.”

Mr Codd, from Sutton-in-Ashfield, also claimed that because he has taken rental aid he is not permitted to offer takeaway food or drinks while restrictions are in place.

If he were to start serving customers, he would have to pay the cost of rent and gas.

This has added additional strain to the business, which he believes may not survive until the summer without extra support.

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“I think if it carries on like this until May it’ll be too late, we’ll shut down. That would be heartbreaking for our regulars, who feel like family to us,” he said.

“Pubs were already being hit hard, but now it feels like they’re shutting left, right and centre. It feels like we’ve been sidelined and forgotten.

“From our point of view those in charge are just thinking we’ll be fine and that we’ll survive, but they don’t see what’s going on behind the scenes.”

Mr Codd is now calling on the Government to do more to help the hospitality industry through a difficult period, as lockdown restrictions look set to continue for the foreseeable future.

He said: “They have to do things properly. They need to tailor support to individual businesses to make sure they’re covering costs and can survive.

“They could help with rent without stopping us from serving food or drink, or just top up costs where they’re needed for places that are open.

“At the moment, though, what’s being offered is just not enough. On the surface we’re trying to stay positive for our customers but on the back end we’re distraught.”

The Bull and Bush in the snow
The Bull and Bush in the snow
(Image: Brad Codd)

HM Treasury has said it is taking steps to support businesses and jobs until the spring by offering new top-up grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses worth up to £9,000 per property.

A further £594 million is also being made available for local authorities across the UK to support other businesses not eligible for the grants.

This follows previous grants worth up to £3,000 for closed businesses, and up to £2,100 per month for impacted businesses once they reopen.

Courtesy of Derbyshire Live – Derby News