A hospitality consultant has made a plea to the Government for urgent help for the self-employed after her business was "wiped out" due to the coronavirus crisis.

Alison Magee-Barker, who operates as a sole trader running AJ Lakes Consultancy, said she would like to see similar measures taken to protect the income of freelancers as were announced for those on salaries last week.

Alison, who lives in Windermere, acts a consultant and trainer for businesses across the Cumbria.

With hospitality operators closing as part of efforts to stall the spread of coronavirus, she said work had dried up.

"My business got wiped out massively as soon as the hospitality industry started closing," she said.

"The first cut that gets made is the consultant, which is something I can fully understand.

"I took a massive hit."

She said her business had already been slowing due to the effects of the virus on foreign travellers, before the dramatic escalation in the UK.

She said she had continued helping advise businesses for free, but was now having to do so at home with her two children, aged six and eight, who she was also home schooling.

As business stopped, she was having to draw on savings to cover the costs of her and her family.

She said the Government needed to announce measures to protect other self-employed people in a similar situation.

"Up to the value of £2500 covering 80 per cent of what we earn would go really well," she said.

"(Statutory sick pay) of £94 a week, with all due respect, isn't going to feed my kids."

Alison said she had received comments via social media saying she should "take the rough with the smooth" as a self-employed person.

However, she said it was important to think of the bigger picture and how people can support each other through the crisis.

"We all have our part to play and the more people who can be helpful the better," she said.

On Friday Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the Government would cover 80 per cent the wages of employees who businesses were affected by the crisis, up to £2500 a month.

Over the weekend, the Federation of Small Businesses urged the Government to also take measures to protect the UK's five million self-employed.

FSB national chairman Mike Cherry said: “Over the weekend we have heard from thousands of self-employed people – including hairdressers, bakers, childcare providers, taxi drivers and café owners – many frightened and in despair at seeing their business fall away, and staring at the prospect of little or no financial support.

“While it is welcome that the government has pledged to cover 80 per cent of the wages of impacted employees, five million self-employed strivers have until now only been offered, at best, access to £94 a week.

"In desperation, many have attempted to apply for Universal Credit after Friday and have been turned down.

“These are people who have worked hard to build up their businesses, paid their taxes and helped the economy to grow.

"They now face a crunch point, with many unable to operate – leaving them without money, but with bills still stacking up.

“We have been strongly urging the government not to allow the self-employed to be left high and dry, and it is welcome to hear the that the Prime Minister is listening and offering new hope.

"This must now be turned urgently into practical and easily accessible support.

"Time is now running out."