‘Closing the restaurant was heartbreaking; you feel like you’re letting people down’: Hospitality sector faces into an uncertain summer

Many in the industry are struggling due to increased costs and staff shortages, yet others are more upbeat about the prospects for a recovery in business over the next few months

Linda Boyle, proprietor of Fusion Bistro in Killybegs, Co Donegal, which closed last week. Picture: Declan Doherty

“It was hard putting out the lights,” Linda Boyle said after she closed the Fusion Bistro in Killybegs last Saturday for the last time.

The May bank holiday weekend should have marked the start of the first normal summer season since the Covid-19 pandemic arrived, bringing a new lease of life to small hospitality businesses. Instead, it marked the end for the Boyles in Co Donegal.

“It was an emotional day, to say the least. ...