WETHERSPOONS founder Tim Martin has attacked the UK Government's coronavirus restrictions, claiming the UK should adopt the Swedish model for pandemics to allow his pubs to open again properly.

Publishing the company's delayed results, the Brexiteer chairman said it was unfair that pubs have been treated harsher than supermarkets as he revealed sales fell from £1.82 billion to £1.26bn in the year to July 26 and the chain sunk to a loss before tax of £105.4 million.

Martin, quoting business scion Warren Buffett from 1989, said governments across the world have based their lockdown decisions on "deeply flawed analysis".

READ MORE: Wetherspoons boss under fire for saying shutting pubs 'over the top'

Unlike most countries Sweden did not go into lockdown when the pandemic hit Europe, instead stressing personal responsibility.

Now its number of deaths per million is higher than some of its closest neighbours. Sweden has had 5800 deaths from Covid-19, equal to about 576.38 deaths per million. In Denmark the figure is 107.73 and in Finland the number stands at 60.46.

It is also still unclear how long people are immune to the coronavirus after becoming ill.

Martin, who is worth an estimated £448m according to 2018 The Sunday Times Rich list, also attacked politicians and the media who reported that the company was considering withholding wages at the start of lockdown - a decision that was eventually not taken.

He added that like-for-like sales in the 11 weeks since July 26 have been 15% below those of last year, with strong sales in the first few weeks, followed by a marked slowdown since the introduction of a curfew and other restrictions.

"It makes no sense for supermarkets to be treated more leniently than pubs, since pubs generate far more jobs per pint or meal than do supermarkets, as well as far higher levels of tax," he said. 

Since the beginning of the pandemic hospitality venues have faced restrictions because people gather inside them - cutting down on social contacts is a key factor in tackling the virus. 

In a long rant to the London Stock Exchange, Martin added: "Pubs also make an important contribution to the social life of many communities and have better visibility and control of those who consume alcoholic drinks."

The businessman, who has no medical qualifications, also questioned the science behind face coverings.