Many cafés and restaurants without outdoor seating will have to wait until May to reopen and they’re hoping Government financial support will stay in place until then.
This follows the Government’s announcement outlining the new roadmap out of lockdown.
For businesses who have had a hard time this year, additional months of closure and partial operation could be critical.
Sarah Loftus, the CEO of the Lincoln Business Improvement Group said: “I think it has been incredibly tough for them and I think some will struggle to just open outdoors.
“I hope that grants and support are still in place for those that can’t make the figures add up to open outdoors because they haven’t got the space.
“What we don’t want to happen is them to fall into a trap of not being able to still furlough their staff or still get grants for that one month because that one month could kill them.”
Under the Government’s plan, hospitality venues will be able accommodate people outside from no earlier than April 12.
For those who cannot accommodate people outside, the wait is extended to a minimum of May 17.
Oakley’s Café in Lincoln is one of many who will have to wait longer to be able to welcome back customers again.
With no outdoor seating, the café is unable to operate under the earliest roadmap rules on April 12.
Cara Oakley, owner of Oakley’s Café said: “It is disappointing. Of course, we would love to be open sooner.
“We understand that it is all part of fighting what is going on, but we’d love to have never of had to close for as long as we’ve had to.
“It is the small independent businesses that this decision is really going to impact the most.
“There is little we can do. I’ve done all I can, so there is not much else I can do as a single person promoting the needs and wants of the local community.
“When the restrictions are able to be eased, I hope that hospitality and retail will be able to bounce back quite well. I do think it will.”
Following the roadmap announcement, Lincolnshire County Council launched a business recovery fund to provide support to local businesses.
However, the applications for the grant were ended early due to the high amount of applications made.
To keep up-to-date on local business support schemes, visit Lincolnshire County Council’s website.