“I’m not holding my breath on significant relief coming any time soon.”

The Staff Canteen

The Wilderness says 'to conserve energy the lights will only be on twice a week. Soz.'

In a post on the company’s website, The Wilderness Owner Alex Claridge, discusses his thoughts on the current 'unprecedented crisis' with 'optimism' and a dash of his notorious dark humour - if we don't laugh, we'll......

Explaining 'it all feels a little like Groundhog Day' he said: "It will have escaped no one’s attention that restaurants up and down the country, faced with the fresh hell of energy renewal quotations, are staring down the barrel of closure once again. We can’t go on. We must go on. But for how long?”

Citing proposed changes being recommended by business owners and leaders across the industry whilst referencing failures of government past and present, Alex said: “UK Hospitality have led the charge for sensible measures; a VAT reduction, a business rates holiday, the reintroduction of HMRC’s Time to Pay scheme and more.

He added: “Unfortunately, our government is as rudderless as ever - at the time of writing, the dozy Teflon twat whose non-stick coating finally wore out has just handed the baton to Truss, a leader who appears to have little to no discernible talent.”



Expanding on his views on Liz Truss after she was appointed the new Prime Minister, Alex called out her decision to promote climate change deniers to central government roles, as well as efforts to protect energy company profits.

He said: “Her first actions have been to appoint a climate sceptic and fossil fuel beneficiary to oversee our national efforts to address climate change and provide temporary reprieve on domestic energy bills with the key objective of protecting energy company profits. I don’t know about you, dear reader, but I’m not holding my breath on significant relief coming any time soon.”


As well as highlighting challenges created by a cost-of-living crisis Alex called for action across the UK’s hospitality industry.

“I write this not as an elegy – there is enough sensationalism and misery in the press as stands, which I don’t think helps. I write this as an invitation to fight,” invited Alex.

He explained: “I established my restaurant to be a space for radical ideas and radical creativity and now, more than ever, I am convinced this is the way forward. I also note for the benefit of those who work in restaurants, restaurateurs should realise early that the stresses affecting businesses and customers will impact on their teams significantly both in and out of service.”

In his call action, Alex summarised: “Reading the hospitality headlines, it’s easy to roll eyes at chefs crying “woe is me” over an inflated energy bill. And yet, whilst dining out, and certainly fine dining, is a luxury, it’s also a livelihood, not just for owners, but millions of talented hospitality professionals and suppliers across the country. And we can’t let the lights go out on them.”

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 7th September 2022

“I’m not holding my breath on significant relief coming any time soon.”