Coronavirus: Buzzworks Holdings digs deep for Hospitality Action

SCOTTISH bar and restaurant group Buzzworks Holdings has donated £10,000 to industry charity Hospitality Action amid the coronavirus crisis.

The donation will help the charity fund the range of support services it offers for people working within the hospitality industry, which include a 24-hour advice line; counselling sessions on stress, addiction and abuse; and grants to help with debt or short-term money concerns.

Kenny Blair, managing director of Buzzworks, whose 12-strong portfolio includes Vics & The Vine in Prestwick and Scotts venues in Troon, Largs and South Queensferry, said: “Along with many others in the hospitality industry, Buzzworks is feeling the impact of Covid-19, having to temporarily close our doors as instructed by the UK Government.

“We have been in the fortunate position, however, to retain the vast majority of our existing team – over 500 members of staff – through government grants across our portfolio.

“Everyone is in this crisis together and feeling its effect, so we are doing what we can to ensure all of our stakeholders are taken care of. Both our suppliers will be paid and our staff will continue to receive their wages weekly; and where we haven’t been able to keep on five of our team members due to their short time with Buzzworks, we have made sure that they receive payment in lieu of their notice and assistance to find other temporary work.”

And Blair said a number of the 500-strong Buzzworks team, who have been furloughed due to the crisis, have volunteered to help those in need. Chefs have been cooking meals for vulnerable people through local Ayrshire charity Centrestage; student NHS staff working part-time within the business have stepped up to assist GPs and hospitals; and many more have volunteered to help their local communities in any way they can.

“Having built our family business for over 40 years, we would not be in the position we are in without our dedicated Buzzworks team,” he said.

“With so many putting themselves forward to take on temporary work to support those most at need within the community, that commitment has shone through once again and this makes us feel incredibly proud.

“Where we can, Buzzworks is helping those volunteers find the appropriate job roles, whilst we continue to monitor developments regarding the virus and put plans in place to re-open stronger and better than ever – when the time is right and it is safe to do so.”