Thurrock MPs Jackie Doyle-Price and Stephen Metcalfe are at the forefront of an initiative to change the law relating to tied leases for public houses. Under tied arrangements breweries are able to compel pubs to purchase their supplies solely from them, often at inflated prices.
Jackie said, “We really do need to take action to Save the British Pub. The Pub is at the heart of community life in Britain and we simply cannot afford to keep losing them at a rate of 40 a week. The smoking ban and cheap booze in supermarkets have made life a lot more difficult for traditional pubs. I want to do what I can to reverse this decline and support those pubs that still survive.”
“In recent years pub owning companies have emerged who have saddled landlords with leases that have made them pay a lot more for their supplies than if they were free houses. It is suggested that they are deliberately making life tough for the publican, safe in the knowledge that they can sell off the pub and build houses if the business goes bust. This has to stop.”
Stephen said “Coming from a small business background myself, I understand that often keeping costs down means the difference between survival and failure. Local pubs across the UK and in my constituency don’t want handouts, just the opportunity to compete effectively without unfair costs being imposed on them. I have spoken to publicans about this very issue, and everyday can be a fight for survival. The breweries are forcing higher price upon them and preventing them from buying their supplies from cheaper wholesalers elsewhere, which is totally unacceptable in a economy that prides itself on being competitive.”