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Eating out 'remains popular with UK consumers'

17 | 01 | 13

The UK restaurant market is set to face some challenges over the next 12 months but should still perform reasonably well, with Britons committed to dining out despite the squeeze on their disposable finances endured over recent years.

According to Christie + Co's Business Outlook 2013 report, people have not curbed their desire to eat out, signalling that British hospitality operators will still be able to find good opportunities for expansion in the coming months.

However, the firm admitted that conditions have been slightly tougher for businesses looking to fit out new sites with catering equipment recently, with high streets losing some of their vibrancy and potential to attract footfall.

Despite the fact that rents have been dropping, it seems that restaurateurs have been deterred from expanding by the recent glut of high street closures among retailers and the large number of vacant spaces seen across the UK.

Simon Chaplin, director and head of restaurants at Christie + Co, suggested that the outlook remains reasonably positive.

"Our enthusiasm for visiting pubs, restaurants and takeaways hasn't diminished - in fact there's plenty of evidence to suggest that the average number of dining experiences enjoyed outside the home will grow over the coming months," he added.

The change in the average lifestyle enjoyed by many Britons means restaurants will always have a strong base to build on, with increasingly long hours and a lack of skill in the kitchen meaning eating out has become "a habit, if not a necessity".

This means that the quick service and casual dining sector will continue to enjoy the healthiest levels of growth in the coming months, with many consumers looking for convenience and value rather than fine dining.

According to the Coffer Peach Business Tracker, pubs and restaurants are performing better than they were at this time last year.ADNFCR-16001031-ID-801524217-ADNFCR

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