The rate of decline for the number of licensed premises in Britain has almost doubled since the last edition of the Market Growth Monitor, from CGA and AlixPartners.

Britain has 3,116 fewer restaurants, bars, pubs and other licensed premises than 12 months ago, with the year-on-year rate of decline having increased from 1.3% at the time of the last quarterly report in March, to 2.5% for the year to June 2018.

This took the total number of sites to 119,800 licensed sites, with an average net closure rate of around eight premises per day.

Overall the number of restaurants fell by 1% (264 premises) in the year to June, however, when compared with June 2013 numbers are still up 11%. The number of pubs and bar dropped by 2.4% to 49,982 sites.

London has seen a 2.3% decline in numbers, but falls were seen in every part of the country, with Wales seeing numbers drop by 3.4% and the north-west by 1.7%.

However the report said there were bright spots in terms of openings, with Manchester (+25.1%), Liverpool (+23.7%) and Leeds (+20.9%) now home to at least a fifth more licensed premises than five years ago. While Oxford has also seen a huge boost to the number branded restaurants in the past year (+40.5%), due to the opening of the Westgate development.

As a general rule newer restaurant brands tend to be opening at a faster rate than larger, more established ones, with Franco Manca and Five Guys adding on sites at apace over the past year, and Nando’s the fastest growing brand of all, with 19 net new openings over the past five years, found the report.

For pubs and bars the decline in numbers is still largely down to the closure of community pubs. While there has been a 18.7% increase in the net new openings of branded food pubs over the past five year, compared with a 17.2% in drink-led pubs over the same period. But wet-led entertainment venues have increased their numbers over the past year by 3.6% to 4,112.

Peter Martin, vice president, CGA, said: “Given the multitude of challenges facing the sector at the moment, it is no surprise to find that the pace of licensed premises closures is increasing.

“People continue to eat and drink out, and new and exciting restaurant, pub and bar brands are still achieving impressive growth. But competition from these dynamic start-ups, rising costs and the fickle nature of many consumers are combining to turn up the heat on established restaurant brands. In the current climate, standing still is simply not an option.”

Graeme Smith, managing director, AlixPartners, added: “The Monitor tells the story of a market responding to current pressures. Restaurant expansion is still on the agenda for some companies, particularly in those locations across the UK that have previously been under-served by casual dining operators - but management teams and investors need to carefully consider their opening strategies.

“When it comes to pubs, operators with a well-executed food offer remain attractive, and those who add accommodation to the mix are under the spotlight of investors looking to businesses with more diversified revenue streams and broader trading windows.”