Camra calls for Government help as almost 30 pubs close every week

Campaigners are calling on the Government to help publicans keep establishments open

28 pubs close “unnecessarily” every week according to campaigners who have called for the Government to do more to help publicans. 

New research shows that closures have increased by two pubs a week since last year, according to The Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) who compiled the results.

Camra has urged the Government to help prevent pubs closures by setting up a pub watchdog to protect licensees from high rents and beer prices controlled by large pub companies.

The so-called tied pub model, under which licensees have to buy supplies from a large pub company or “pubco”, has come under increased criticism, as 57 per cent of licensees operating under these circumstances earn less than £10,000 a year.

The Government should also close planning “loopholes” that make it possible to convert a pub into a betting shop, pay-day loan store or supermarket without the need for planning permission, because they make it “far too easy” for valued community pubs to be lost, Camra said.

The organisation is also campaigning for ministers to freeze the rate of beer duty in next month's Budget after over 5,000 Camra members contacted their MPs last week.

The closed down Prince Albert public house in Ashford, Kent The closed down Prince Albert public house in Ashford, Kent
Mike Benner, Camra's chief executive said: “Pubs are unnecessarily closing as tied licensees struggle to make their businesses succeed thanks to increased rents and inflated beer prices.

"It is vital that the Government step in to redress the balance with the implementation of an independent pubs watchdog and an option for licensees of large pub companies to opt for market-rent-only agreements, allowing them to buy beer on the open market at cheaper prices."

Mr Benner added: "Britons pay the second highest rate of beer duty in the European Union which puts the pubs sector under pressure. We were delighted when the Chancellor cut beer duty in last year's Budget and are urging him to build on this with a freeze or further reduction this year."

A Department for Communities and Local Government spokesman said: "Local pubs are part of the social and cultural fabric of this nation and we are determined to protect them. That's why we are cutting taxes for small community pubs by doubling small business rate relief for three and a half years, and reducing corporation tax to 20%.

“We have also called time on the unpopular beer tax, cutting a penny off a pint, which is good news for pubs and punters alike.

”On top of this, the Community Right to Bid is already giving local people the power to step in and save their treasured pub from closure, with 300 now registered as community assets.“

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitm...

Recruitment Genius: Factory Operatives

£7 - £8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This high quality thread manufacturer ba...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003