Rishi Sunak has approached TV personality Gordon Ramsay to discuss the hospitality industry’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The chancellor tweeted that he discussed challenges facing the sector and how the celebrity chef managed to launch a TV show in lockdown.
But people were quick to question whether he was the right person to approach given that many millions of ordinary people have been put out of work by the pandemic and continue to struggle.
In March Ramsay made more than 500 members of staff redundant after having to temporarily shut down his string of restaurants.
Restaurant critic Marina O’Loughlin tweeted at the time: “Yet again, a day when multi-millionaires won’t put hands in pockets while the little guys doing everything they can for their staff,” to which Ramsay, who is reportedly worth £48 million, responded: “You’ve clearly have never run a business, and yet across these very difficult times for all, you hide behind your pathetic tweets, get a grip will you!!!”
Sunak’s decision to sit down with the TV chef has prompted a flurry of responses on social media. Here’s a pick of the replies so far:
Up next – Rishi talks to Lewis Hamilton about the problems facing ordinary people working in the transport industry.— Colin Bradbury (@ColinBradbury3) February 18, 2021
Heartwarming: faced with the prospect of losing some money during the pandemic, this millionaire fired 500 staff and continued to work on the telly— James Felton (@JimMFelton) February 18, 2021
Rishi I think if you spoke to @UKHospKate you might gain some knowledge about how a wide spectrum of the industry is feeling. With due respect to Gordon he operates in London and only in restaurants.— Paul Heathcote MBE (@paul_heathcote) February 18, 2021
. Started my biz 2011— Kim Kingston (@kimkingston10) February 18, 2021
. Husband died Nov 2018-brain tumour
. Cashed his pension Feb 2019
. Covid hit March 2020
. @RishiSunak “no-one will be forgotten”
. #ExcludedUK from gvmt help as apparently pension payout is “my other job”
. If I was employed, this pension wouldn’t count!
Well done Rishi. Give me a shout and I’ll let you know how the last 11 months have been without any financial assistance in a hospitality and events industry that sees little light at the end of this tunnel. That’s right……£0.— Fred MacAulay (@fredmacaulay) February 18, 2021