Spending in pubs across Southend and Basildon has increased sharply since drinking and eating were allowed back inside.

Banking firm Revolut analysed the data of its 16,000 customers in Southend and Basildon between May 17 – when indoor hospitality resumed – and June 13.

Punters in Basildon spent 44 per cent more in pubs during this period, while there was also a 32 per cent increase in Southend.

But spending in both towns was still more than 50 per cent below the level recorded in February 2020, before the pandemic struck.

Across Great Britain, spending in the month since pubs reopened their doors for indoor service was still 58% lower than in February last year.

Mr Johnson pushed back the end of England’s coronavirus restrictions to July 19 due to concerns over the rapidly spreading Delta variant first identified in India.

Pubs across the country had been preparing to welcome customers back with no limits on social contact or group sizes from Monday (June 21).

Sector leaders including the British Beer and Pub Association, UK Hospitality and the Campaign for Real Ale say they are “bitterly disappointed” by the delay, which they estimate will cost pubs £400 million alone.

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A joint spokesman said: “Our sector is facing one of its toughest periods in its history and this latest delay is yet another setback.

“Many pubs cannot break even under current restrictions and around 2,300 still remain closed “It is now absolutely critical that the Government provides our sector with further support – else the recovery of our pubs will be over before they’ve even been given a chance.”

They have also called on the Prime Minister to prioritise the additional £1.5 billion business rates support package announced back in March, to ensure eligible businesses such as brewers can apply as soon as possible.

Revolut figures also show that spending in restaurants across Britain was still 51 per cent below normal in the four weeks to June 13.

In Basildon, it was 38 per cent below the pre-pandemic baseline, and it was also down 33 per cent in Southend.

Separate figures from the Office for National Statistics also show that UK pubs had been under increasing pressure before the pandemic even began.

The number of pubs fell to 38,900 in March last year – down slightly from 2019, and significantly fewer than the 52,500 in 2001.

In Basildon, this figure fell from 55 in 2001 to 40 in 2020, but in Southend, this figure was unchanged from 70 in the same period.