The joint chair of Liverpool Hospitality Association and chef patron of one of the city's best restaurants has said there is a "glimmer of hope" for the local sector as it approaches the end of its second week in Tier 3 restrictions - but that many challenges lie ahead.
Paul Askew of the Art School Restaurant said that at the outset of the restrictions being imposed last week, nervousness prevailed for many customers with reservations at the Sugnall Street venue, but that the situation has already improved since then.
He said: "At the beginning it was a very big impact. It had a detrimental impact on consumer confidence and we experienced quite a lot of cancellations.
"The first weekend of Tier 3 was very difficult and we were all feeling very gloomy. The positive side of it is that seems to have eased a little bit this week, and people seem to have got their heads round what Tier 3 is and what we can and cannot do."
Liverpool City Region was the first in the UK to be placed under the tougher Tier 3 restrictions on October 14, which mean a ban on households mixing in most locations, and bars and pubs not serving food must close.
But Mr Askew said the public has been "bombarded with things we can't do" - with a lot of the messaging "making people worried".
He added: "I think we've got to start focusing now on what people can do and flip it around so they realise they are allowed to do some things, like business lunches, and you are allowed to go out for a drink as long as you have a substantial meal."
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He praised the Liverpool City Region's combined authority for arranging an emergency fund worth £40m for hospitality businesses.
"The reason that we've got the confidence to do that is the collaboration between private sector, city council and city region has been phenomenal, and for them to put that fund together in the time they have is great - people will receive money as soon as next week.
"The impact [of Tier 3] is huge but at the same time, there are some mitigating things coming together."
He pointed to Chancellor Rishi Sunak's announcement on Thursday - a multi billion-pound package including grants for hospitality businesses in areas like Liverpool that have been subject to local lockdowns.
Reacting to the announcement, Mr Askew said: "It's a further step in the right direction. I think there will probably need to be more intervention along the way but we're definitely on the right track."
So with Liverpool so reliant on its hospitality sector and visitor economy, does the combination of all of the available support grants from local and national government mean the industry's future is now secure?
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According to Mr Askew, it may not be that simple.
"I think we all know the toughest restrictions are on pubs and bars and I feel desperately sorry for that group," he said.
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"What we've got to try and do is diversify a little bit, think outside the box. Make sure you apply for the grant scheme the council has put together.
"I think if businesses can do that - and I'm not saying it's all bright skies, because it's not, it's bloody hard and it's going to continue to be bloody hard - I do see now a little glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel."
Fears remain however, about whether cases will rise once again, meaning even more severe measures imposed upon the economy.
"The only concern is whether we end up in a further lockdown situation - if the cases don't come down and we end up going the other way, we'd really need another package from the Government as that would be incredibly difficult.
"In our industry, if you lose the festive season, it makes January, February and March a very, very gloomy place. Those months are gloomy in a normal year, never mind post-Covid. So there are still many challenges ahead."