SEVERAL pubs in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole during the pandemic, new figures show.

The coronavirus pandemic placed extraordinary pressure on pubs and the hospitality sector as national lockdowns forced closures, while demand took a hit as punters chose to stay at home to avoid catching the virus.

New data from real estate advisers Altus Group shows there were 140 pubs in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole as of June, down from 145 in March 2020, before the first coronavirus lockdown.

Across the south west there have been 79 closures since the start of the pandemic, including 23 this year.

Altus Group said pubs could have fared worse during the pandemic, and instead proved “remarkably resilient" during the economic turbulence.

However, its UK president Robert Hayton warned they are now dealing with "soaring energy costs, inflationary pressures and tax rises” which may force more pubs to close their doors.

Pub numbers across England and Wales have dropped below 40,000 for the first time, with 200 lost between the end of 2021 and the end of June.

This decline started long before the pandemic, nationally 7,000 pubs have been shuttered over the last decade.

Altus Group said these pubs will likely have been demolished or turned into residential and office space.

Research by the British Beer and Pub Association, British Institute of Innkeeping and UKHospitality shows only 37 per cent of hospitality businesses are turning a profit at present.

The rising costs of energy, goods and labour have been blamed for falling profits, and the industry is now calling on the Government to provide more support.