Devastating job losses predicted for Wales’ tourism hot spots
New research by the Royal Society of Arts and Manufacturing has predicted that areas in the UK that are most dependent on tourism are likely to bear the brunt of post-lockdown job losses.
Both Pembrokeshire and Conwy appear in the list of the 20 areas most at risk with 31% of jobs in both areas under threat.
The report follows analysis from the RSA based on the latest furloughing data from the ONS and the jobs profile for each local authority.
The figures reveal 80% of workers in the hotel and food industries are on furlough schemes, alongside 68% of those in arts, entertainment and recreation, about a third of jobs are permanently at risk in the longer term in tourism-reliant areas.
In Pembrokeshire, the total number of jobs threatened is 13,313 and in Conwy 12,907.
Richmondshire in North Yorkshire – which contains Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s constituency – tops the list of areas set to be most affected, with 35% of jobs vulnerable owing to its large hospitality and tourism sectors.
People living in London, south-east England and the knowledge economies of Oxford and Cambridge are the least likely to lose their livelihoods, the study says.
The RSA also found that younger workers aged 16 to 24 were more than twice as likely to be furloughed as middle-aged workers.
Alan Lockey, head of the RSA Future Work Centre, and one of the report’s authors said: “No part of the country is likely to be spared a severe recession, but those most dependent on hospitality and tourism will be particularly badly hit, especially rural areas, including many Tory shires.
“The government’s response so far has been robust, but it must avoid going back to ‘business as usual’ – including Universal Credit, sanctions and means-testing – if it’s to avoid the devastating impact of prolonged unemployment on whole swathes of the population.
“Covid-19 only highlights the need for a welfare state which addresses the economic insecurity felt by growing numbers of people in the UK.”