Prince William has warned of a "mental health catastrophe" if lockdowns stop people socialising.
His comments came on a video call with business leaders in Liverpool, the first area of England put under the toughest Tier Three restrictions.
They discussed the city's hospitality sector, which has been ravaged by the Covid-19 restrictions.
Entrepreneur Natalie Haywood said: "He was very focused on the wellbeing side of things and spoke of the mental health catastrophe Britain will face if people aren't allowed to experience social aspects of their lives."
A royal aide added: "The mental health of the nation is always a priority. And it will only be in the coming months that we see how acutely this is being affected by what is happening."
During a video call with entrepreneurs, the royal discussed the challenges the hospitality industry is facing.
It came as around 300 workers, from chefs to events organisers, protested outside Parliament to demand extra financial support.
Hopes of a high street revival have been dashed by a slump in shoppers and pub-goers on the back of new lockdowns and curfews. Footfall across the country was down by 3.1 per cent last week.
Prince William yesterday spoke to Liverpool venue boss Haywood and nightclub DJ Yousef.
Haywood, who has already been forced to make 40 redundancies from her staff of 200, said: "William was extremely empathetic to our situation and really wanted to listen to what is actually happening on the ground.
"Yousef told him that music, socialising and being with friends is absolutely central to dealing with people's mental health and William absolutely agreed with that."
Firms forced to close in areas under Tier Three are able to use the new Job Support Scheme, which will pay two-thirds of the wages of staff unable to work.
But financial support is much lower in Tier Two restrictions in the UK.
Haywood said: "William agreed that we won't really see the true effects of the virus for many months but was encouraged that businesses are pulling together by trying to help one another.
"The problem for a lot of businesses is being strangled by being in Tier Two and people not being sure or able to get out and socialise, but they are being told to stay open with no support – this will be absolutely catastrophic."
A royal aide said the issue of mental health was "always at the forefront" of William and Kate's minds.
Asked what prompted William's call, they explained: "It's clear that different parts of the country are feeling the effects in different ways.
"The duke has been spending a great deal of time speaking to, and where he can, meeting communities across the country that have been affected. The mental health of the nation is always a priority. And it will only be in the coming months that we see how acutely this is being affected by what is happening."