Two thousand of the nation’s much-loved pubs are facing last orders, the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has warned as it calls on the Government to extend a lifeline to the sector.
The BBPA is calling on the Government to use the Spring Budget to show it understands just how much pubs and breweries mean to their communities, and the pressures the sector is facing, and deliver a plan for sustainable growth with fair, modernised tax rates and a focus on skills and training needed to ensure pubs and breweries can thrive.
They are calling on the Chancellor to freeze duty rates, implement a significant increase in the discount for draft beer sold in pubs, and introduce the previously announced reduced rate for lower-strength beers from 1st August. Ahead of the Energy Bill Relief Scheme being significantly reduced from 1 April, the BBPA is also continuing to highlight the poor practice of energy suppliers and the ongoing impact soaring energy costs is having on the industry, insisting that the Government holds suppliers accountable and fix a broken system that is penalising hospitality businesses.
The BBPA’s call comes as data from Oxford Economics estimates on-trade beer sales will decline by 9% in 2023/4. This equates to one million fewer barrels of beer sold (288 million pints) and 25,000 potential job losses in pubs and the wider industry
- 2,000 pubs could be at risk of closure without support in Spring Budget, BBPA warns
- 288 million fewer pints estimated to be sold in 2023/24, potentially leading to 25,000 job losses and potentially 2,000 business closures as a result
- New polling shows 69% of the nation think pubs play an important role in bringing communities together
In what’s being termed a make-or-break moment for the sector, the BBPA are also encouraging those interested in supporting their local pub to sign their Long Live the Local petition, at longlivethelocal.pub and share their favourite pub memories across social media using #LongLiveTheLocal