Commenting on the announcement of a four-week lockdown, Dan Fell, Chief Executive Officer at Doncaster Chamber, said: “Another national lockdown will be extremely problematic for many businesses and entrepreneurs. The business community has sacrificed so much over the last six months and will feel let down by a government that has failed to implement the robust test and trace system that it said was the key to keeping people and businesses working throughout the pandemic.

“Having survived the first lockdown via innovation and tenacity, many businesses are now running on empty; the bleak reality is that we will see numerous business failures and job losses throughout the winter. Whilst extending furlough is welcome, the reality is that any business support intervention from government is a poor substitute for business as normal and being able to trade and compete within an open economy. It is simply unacceptable to hang the business community out to dry like this.

“This will trigger an economic crisis for the UK and, in the mid-term, government must pull all possible levers to grow our way out of this dire position. This must equate to unprecedented levels of investment in major infrastructure projects including those that will support places like Doncaster and honour the government’s now dubious sounding commitments to ‘levelling up’. This includes reversing recent decisions not to prioritise investment in a new hospital in Doncaster and a railway station serving Doncaster Sheffield Airport.

“Finally, I would urge all businesses to reach out to organisations like Chambers of Commerce and the region’s Growth Hub. Help and guidance is available; business leaders do not have to go through this alone.”