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Staycations hammer hotels

Insolvency levels among hotels hit a high for the recession during the fourth quarter of 2009, according to the latest data from business advisers PricewaterhouseCoopers. Over the winter, the rate at which hospitality and leisure firms became insolvent rose 12 per cent. The increase was driven by a 68 per cent surge in hotel insolvencies from the third quarter to the fourth quarter and a 31 per cent increase year-on-year. Hardest hit were provincial hotels outside the big hotel chains. They have suffered from holidaymakers switching from hotel accommodation to campsites and holiday parks. PwC partner David Chubb said: “Individual hotels based in the provinces and not affiliated with a major brand have continued to suffer from poor occupancy and low rates. We expect this to continue into 2010.”