Northern city centres lead UK hospitality bounceback, with 3.9% growth in new restaurants, bars and pubs in Leeds

A survey of the UK’s major city centres has shown that Liverpool leads the UK with a 4.4% increase in restaurants, bars and pubs between September 2021 and December 2021. The North dominated the list with Leeds in second place on 3.9%, Manchester fourth on 2.5% and Newcastle fifth on 2.3%, all far outstripping the 1.6% growth shown by London.

With a host of high-profile new openings, including Coco’s Kitchen, Oba and Sqew in Leeds, Northern cities are leading the UK in terms of new openings, despite the unprecedented challenges of the past two years, according to data compiled by Northern Restaurant & Bar (NRB), the North’s hospitality trade exhibition. 

The growth has been driven by the region’s ambitious local entrepreneurs, as well as national operators, who have invested as the pandemic eases, feeding the growing appetites of both locals and city visitors. The data was provided by CGA, the industry-leading food and drink data insights company.

Leeds came second on the list, with 3.9% growth behind Liverpool, which topped the list with a huge 4.4% net increase in hospitality venues over the last three months of 2021. Edinburgh came third on 3.3%, Manchester was fourth on 2.5% growth, and Newcastle rounded out the top five with 2.3% growth. London came in ninth out of the 14 cities surveyed (Core and capital cities, plus Chester and York). The fact that four of the top five fastest recovering hospitality scenes are in the North neatly echoes recent national hospitality awards, which declared four of the UK’s top five restaurants and four of its top five gastropubs to be in the North of England.

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