Plea to stop no-show diners in Christmas build-up

A waitress takes orders from the outdoor dining pods which have been installed for social distancing

People have been urged to cancel bookings they can't attend rather than not showing up. - Credit: PA

People booking a meal out in Norfolk have been urged to cancel dinner reservations they can't make to support restaurants.

Christmas is a key time for the hospitality industry, and this year in particular owners will be hoping to make up for a bleak Christmas 2020.

Stefan Gurney, executive director of the Norwich Business Improvement District (BID), said they were hearing reports from businesses of diners not showing up to bookings.

"The biggest challenges we have seen while talking to our business community," he said, "is some people not informing restaurants and bars when they are cancelling reservations, and instead just not attending.

Stefan Gurney, executive director of Norwich Business Improvement District (BID).

Stefan Gurney, executive director of the Norwich BID. - Credit: Neil Didsbury

"We would ask people to make sure when they cancel they let them know so they have time to replace the bookings."

He said it was particularly key with larger bookings, such as Christmas parties, which would have a bigger impact.

Visit Norwich posted on Twitter to say: "Booked a table at a restaurant or a winter break in Norwich and can no longer go? Please remember to cancel your booking so that your table or room does not go to waste."