Pubs ‘vanishing' at increasing rate over last three months

10 October 2022 by
Pubs ‘vanishing' at increasing rate over last three months

Real estate adviser Altus Group has warned that 50 pubs a month are ‘vanishing' from communities across England and Wales.

During the three months to the end of September, analysis of Government property tax records revealed that 150 pubs were either demolished or converted into other uses such as homes and offices. Wales and the North-West lost the greatest number of pubs.

That number was up 50% on the 200 pubs which were lost for good during the first six months of 2022. The total number of pubs, including those vacant and being offered to let, fell below 40,000 for the first time to 39,973 at the end of June compared with 40,173 at the end of the 2021 calendar year, according to Altus Group's annual business rates review.

With pubs grappling with soaring costs and fragile consumer confidence, Robert Hayton, UK president at Altus Group, said last month's mini budget contained "glaring omissions", adding: "It beggars belief that a self-proclaimed low tax Government could allow pubs lose to their business rates discount next April as well as seeing any benefit from next year's revaluation potentially wiped out by inflation."

Until the end of March next year, pubs receive a 50% discount on their business rates bills worth on average £9,563 per pub, although that support is capped at £110,000 per business and is due to end on 1 April 2023.

Overall business rates revenue is also set to rise next April in line with September's headline rate of inflation, which is due to be released by the Office for National Statistics on 19 October.

JD Wetherspoon has warned the business is facing "a momentous challenge" to persuade pubgoers back into its bars after they got used to drinking supermarket beer during the pandemic.

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