Several Brabant cities including Eindhoven, Tilburg and Den Bosch are not participating in the protest action of other hospitality entrepreneurs. Other hospitality entrepreneurs want to open their terraces on March 2. Instead of opening up completely, some regions will put terraces outside, but shall not receive guests.
The Eindhoven hospitality industry wants to focus on the long term. They are planning with the municipality. This is what Ruud Bakker, chairman of the Eindhoven branch of Koninklijke Horeca Nederland (KHN) says, in the radio program Wakker!.
“We are having talks with the municipality to make a plan, so that the catering industry can open in a safe way. Why put in all that effort now?”
He understands the sentiment of the hospitality sector. “Of course, we also see the parks full of people. You think: it’s better for those people to sit responsibly on the terraces. But yes, we have to deal with the measures as they are.”
Tilburg and Den Bosch
The KHN branches of Tilburg, Den Bosch, Rosmalen, Meierijstad and Eersel, like Eindhoven, have decided not to participate, mainly for the same reasons. KHN Tilburg chairman Tim Wijdemans says: “Action is required, but we are not going to encourage entrepreneurs to break the rules. We don’t think this is the way to enforce it. We don’t support that, so we won’t participate.”
However, the cities want to ‘do something’. The KHN calls on Tilburg, Den Bosch, Meierijstad and Rosmalen to open their terraces on March 2, but not to receive guests.
Bernhard Kuenen, regional chairman of the KHN in Den Bosch, says he wants to send a signal to politicians.
“We endorse the core message that the group of 65 municipalities is expressing. But we do not want to open the terraces, if it is illegal. Instead, we ask our members to set up the terraces outside, but not to receive guests. This is our way of letting people know that we disagree with the current state of affairs.”
Both Wijdemans and Kuenen are hoping for a support base among the entrepreneurs in their regions. They hope that other municipalities will also join in.
Translation: Chaitali Sengupta