Mitchells & Butlers (LON: MAB) have reported a 6.4% fall in sales over September.

The owner of Harvester, Toby Carvery, and All Bar One revealed a dip in sales after enjoying a boost over August – thanks to the Eat Out To Help Out scheme, which saw sales rise by 1.4%. pos

The company has warned of future trading following the latest social distancing measures.

Chief executive Phil Urban said: “After a difficult period of closure, we have been delighted to welcome back our guests with the vast majority of our sites open and trading again under COVID-secure procedures. I am particularly impressed by the way in which our teams have made this possible by responding to the challenge of our new operating environment with energy and enthusiasm.”

“The future remains both challenging and uncertain, with only this week a curfew and other additional restrictions being imposed on how and when we can operate. However, we believe we are well placed to meet that challenge and to keep Mitchells & Butlers at the forefront of the eating and drinking-out market.”

A new survey following the 10pm curfew has revealed that one quarter of pubs and restaurants could collapse by Christmas without government help.

Emma McClarkin, chief executive of The British Beer & Pub Association, said: “This research shows pub businesses were already teetering on the edge.”

“Now the prime minister has announced even more restrictions for them, it is clear much more support will be needed from the government to ensure they survive.

“An immediate stimulus package is required for our sector in the form of an extension to the furlough scheme and business rates relief, plus continuation of the VAT cut to food and soft drinks and a significant cut to the UK’s excessively high beer duty,” added McClarkin.

Mitchells & Butlers shares (LON: MAB) remain fairly unchanged on Wednesday and are trading +0.44% at 136,60 (1028GMT).