BUSINESS leaders have warned the Fylde coast’s pub trade could be decimated within five years, as landlords claim they have been brought to their knees by high rents and extortionate alcohol prices.
The Federation of Small Businesses is begging the Government to step in to give licensees more rights to compete on the open market rather than be tied in to contracts with national firms, known as pubcos.
Fylde coast branch chairman Steve Pye said they had major concerns over the future of Blackpool’s famous pub trade as it was revealed around 25 venues go to the wall in the UK each week.
He added: “If nothing is done there will be no pubs or clubs open on the Fylde coast in five years or less.
“In addition to cheap supermarket alcohol deals, and 24-hour drinking legislation, which has had an adverse effect on the industry, tenanted pubs are still not getting a fair deal from the pubcos which own them.
“Landlords have long paid inflated beer prices and had high rents imposed.”
Some of the Fylde coast’s most historic locals have gone to the wall in recent months.
In Blackpool, Marton’s The Royal and Layton’s The Windmill pubs have been turned into Tesco stores.
The Oxford in Marton also shut its doors permanently while The Royal in Poulton has been bought by developers hoping to build homes on the site.
The Victoria Hotel in St Annes is set to be closed for plush new homes to be built but currently remains open In Lytham, the Station Tavern and The Queens shut for a short time while The Fairhaven down the road has been put up for rent.
Last year, the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee said a revised code of practice should be put in place to help give tenants a fairer deal.
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