Government urged to stem rate of pub closures

22 October 2008 by
Government urged to stem rate of pub closures

The Government was today urged by MPs to take immediate action to stem the rate of pub closures.

The report, the result of 28 months work, says: "There are many, many areas of Government activity where some relatively small changes could go a long way to improving marginal pubs' viability."

Recommendations include:

  • The Government should reduce the rate of beer duty and/or VAT on draught beer
  • Pubs need better access to funding, finance and advice for diversification.
  • Local authorities need to understand and support pubs' needs in the planning process.
  • The licensing process needs to be made simpler and cheaper. .
  • Rate relief and rateable values need revising to make sure all community pubs can be rewarded for their community contribution through a discount to their rates
  • Licensees should be given greater access to funded training to allow them to develop the necessary business skills to diversify successfully.
  • Pay-TV broadcaster Sky should support community pubs by lowering its prices to those that have low profitability, but high rateable values.

Nigel Evans, the Conservative MP for Ribble Valley and co-chair of the inquiry, said: "We cannot sit back and let these gems disappear. They are the heart of the community. It is where all community life in some rural areas takes place."

The report was welcomed by the Campaign for Real Ale, whose chief executive Mike Benner said: "The report is a big step forward and has many positive suggestions for Government. I hope it will be the catalyst for a change in approach, which struggling community pubs so desperately need."

Beer group wants minimum price on all alcohol sales >>

Parliamentary voice for an embattled industry >>

Tory MP tables EDM to ban cheap supermarket booze >>

Licensees want beer-tie plans to be scrapped >>

Pub companies to come under scrutiny in new Government inquiry >>

By Daniel Thomas

E-mail your comments to Daniel Thomas here. jobs
Looking for a new job? Find your next pub job here with jobs

The Caterer Blog]( Catch up with more news and gossip on the Caterer Blog here
[Newsletters For the latest hospitality news, sign up for our e-mail newsletters.
The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking