London risks losing its aura as a “fun” place to work, according to a senior economist.

Pablo Shah of the Centre for Economics and Business Research said that the troubled hospitality centre and “ghost town” appearance had made London less attractive to the talent it needs.

Many of CEBR’s own clients, such as finance firms and insurers, are not going back to offices until next year. It predicts that in 2021, the “new normal” will be 30% of London-based employees still working at home on any one day.

It calculates that this will equate to £178m of lost spending on lunches, after-work drinks, stationary and so on.

About £2.3bn of spending in shops, pubs and eateries near London employment hubs was lost or displaced between March and June, CEBR said.