21 Sept 2022
After months of lobbying the Association of Indoor Play spoke to the BBC and welcomed the energy price support package for commercial businesses but warns that this will still result in a significant increase in energy costs for members compared to the start of the year.
The indoor play sector is still recovering from the COVID crisis, during which it was the hardest industry affected with closures for the longest time, and the leisure industry as a whole that has faced a 20% decrease in summer trade year-on-year due mainly to consumers tightening their belt as the cost of living soars.
A recent AIP survey of indoor play operators showed that 34% of Operators now carry debt they did not have before Covid and a further 24% increased the amount of debt they previously had. 83% of Operators worried about their future cashflow. 25% of operators surveyed have reduced their opening times to the public in order to contain costs and a further 37% are considering doing so. The direct impact will be on reduced opportunities for children, who are still bearing the trauma of COVID lockdowns, to have fewer opportunities to enjoy indoor playtime.
Tom Filer, owner of the Family Adventurers Group and AIP Committee Member, spoke to the BBC and was on Jeremy Vines to talk about the effect of the energy crisis on operators. He stated that the industry is in a “perilous” situation and further support packages must be forthcoming.
BBC News - 21 Sept 2022
Jeremy Vine - Channel 5 - 21 Sept 202