Guinness Storehouse cuts jobs as it prepares to reopen

Diageo confirmed reports of staff lay-offs when the storehouse reopens. Picture: Getty.
By Ciarán Sunderland

The Guinness Storehouse in Dublin is to lay off staff when it reopens as the popular tourist attraction prepares for a drop in visitor numbers. 

Closed since March, the Guinness Storehouse is set to reopen for business this month. 

Diageo confirmed this morning that staff will be let go and said that workers have been consulted through employee representative bodies. 

The process is expected to be completed by the end of July but the number to be laid off was not revealed.

Around 150 people work at the Guinness Storehouse.

In a statement, a spokesperson for Diageo highlighted the fall in tourist numbers as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic as the reason behind the decision. 

The company said: “The Guinness Storehouse is currently working on preparations for reopening in July, having been closed since early March. 

"We have ensured pay continuity for colleagues throughout this closure period. 

"The tourism sector is expecting significantly reduced international visitor numbers for an extended period of time in Ireland, and the Guinness Storehouse must plan for its reopening on that basis. 

"As a result of this impact, we are in consultation with our employee representative bodies on reducing our overall staffing numbers. 

"Our employees have been informed about this process. We expect this consultation to be completed by the end of the month.”

General secretary of the Guinness Staff Union, John Dunne, says a considerable number of employees are expected to be let go.

Mr Dunne said: "You're looking at a considerable number of people because of the collapse in visitor numbers

"The storehouse was catering for 8,000 visitors a day up until it was closed in March. Our plan is now to begin opening again but it will be a much smaller business."

"The overseas visitors would make up about 93% of visitors into the storehouse. So you can see with the cut down in foreign travel with the tourist industry having collapsed basically, that's a major impact."

One of Ireland's most visited tourist attractions last year, more than 1.7m visitors toured the St Jame's Gate attraction. 

The tourism sector has been severely affected in Ireland as a result of the Covid-19 lockdown leading to a fall in international visitors especially.

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