More than 2,000 jobs are being axed at pub chain Marston's as curfews and new coronavirus restrictions have hammered trade.

The group said around 2,150 of its pub workers currently on furlough support will be impacted, while it will also launch a further cost-cutting plan by the end of the year.

Marston's put the blame squarely on the recent nationwide measures to tackle the surge in coronavirus cases, which has seen curfews placed on hospitality venues and the closures of sites not serving food in high-risk areas such as Liverpool.

The UK Government imposed a 10pm curfew on pubs and hospitality venues across England from September 24, but since then Scotland has imposed a raft of further restrictions including closures in some areas and a 6pm curfew elsewhere.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson also on Monday announced the new three-tier lockdown system, which has seen Liverpool subject to measures including the closure of bars, pubs which do not serve meals, gyms, betting shops and casinos.

Marston's said it has 21 sites in Scotland, of which eight are currently closed, and 18 in the Tier 3 Liverpool region, although the majority of these serve food and are allowed to remain open.

Ralph Findlay, chief executive of Marston's, said: "The additional restrictions which have been applied across the UK most recently present significant challenges to us and will make business more difficult for a period of time.

"I very much regret that the consequence of this is that the jobs of around 2,150 of our colleagues will be impacted, but it is an inevitable consequence of the limitations placed upon our business.

"We will be looking at our cost base further in the coming weeks."

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