Blackpool landlords today hailed new laws aimed at keeping struggling pubs afloat as “absolutely fantastic”.
The Government has announced the introduction of a new code of practice aimed at stopping the so-called “beer tie”, under which landlords have to buy high priced supplies from the companies which own pubs.
And according to Dave Daly, who runs The Castle pub, on Central Drive, and also serves as North West chairman of Licensees Unite, the move will mean good news for pubs lying away from Blackpool town centre.
He said: “It’s absolutely fantastic if they do it. Every single one of the public houses that have shut down on the Fylde have been directly linked to the rent they pay – they just cannot afford the rents.
“The out of town pubs will be waiting with bated breath to see if this goes ahead because there are a lot of good licensees who just aren’t making any money.”
The code would contain mandatory rules for all companies owning more than 500 pubs and would aim to stop abuses of the beer tie, which has been partly blamed for pub closures.
A new Government adjudicator would have the power to enforce the code and deal with disputes through sanctions and fines.
Figures reported by The Gazette last year revealed the Fylde coast has lost 12 pubs between 2010 and 2012.
Mr Daly believes the legislation would not just help existing landlords, but also encourage people to run pubs.
He said: “It’s good news for community pubs and outlying pubs on the Fylde and hopefully this will be a shot in the arm which will see more people coming into the industry.”
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Pubs play a valuable role at the heart of our communities and we urgently need a change to help them survive and become profitable.”