A pub a day calling time in the UK as costs rise

A pub a day calling time in the UK as costs rise Image British Beer and Pub Association

A report released by real estate advisers the Altus Group on July 4 said that a pub a day is calling time in the UK, with more than 200 having closed their doors for good since the beginning of the year.

The report blames a combination of the pandemic and subsequent rising costs on the business failures, with pubs struggling to cope with rising costs and falling customer numbers.

Pub numbers have according to Altus, fallen below 40,000 a drop of nearly 7,000 over the last decade. The rate of closures has sped up and is currently running at around 30 a month, with the trend unlikely to change anytime soon according to Altus.

Rising food and energy costs are said to be the primary cause of the problem, although with many tightening their belts the numbers visiting pubs are falling as is the average spend. Staff shortages have also added to the problem as have low-profit margins and an ever-increasing tax burden.

Although the industry has made repeated calls for assistance from the government, industry sources say that not enough help has been forthcoming.

Altus Group UK president Robert Hayton said: “Whilst pubs proved remarkably resilient during the pandemic, they’re now facing new headwinds grappling with the cost of doing business crisis through soaring energy costs, inflationary pressures and tax rises.”

Concern has been expressed for the industry with the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA), the British Institute of Innkeeping and UKHospitality all warning that only a third of all businesses in the sector is profitable.

BBPA chief executive Emma McClarkin is quoted as saying: “When pubs are forced to close it’s a huge loss to the local community, and these numbers paint a devastating picture of how pubs are being lost in villages, towns and cities across the country.”

She called on the government to act or risk losing more pubs every year adding that the number of premises being sold off for housing and offices would it difficult for the industry to recover in the future.

Pub owners have said a series of walkouts by railway workers have also hit trade

Pub owners have said that the latest hurdle has been the rail strikes which have made it more difficult for people to travel, further reducing business for those who are reliant on commuters and holidaymakers.

The government have yet to comment on the news that a pub a day is calling time in the UK, with their attention clearly focussed on helping the man in the street to cope with cost rises.

Concern has been expressed for the industry with the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA), the British Institute of Innkeeping and UKHospitality all warning that only a third of all business in the sector are profitable.

BBPA chief executive Emma McClarkin is quoted as saying: “When pubs are forced to close it’s a huge loss to the local community, and these numbers paint a devastating picture of how pubs are being lost in villages, towns and cities across the country.”

She called on the government to act or risk losing more pubs every year adding that the number of premises being sold off for housing and offices would it difficult for the industry to recover in the future.

Pub owners have said a series of walkouts by railway workers have also hit trade

Pub owners have said that the latest hurdle has been the rail strikes which have made it more difficult for people to travel, further reducing business for those who are reliant on commuters and holidaymakers.

The government have yet to comment on the news that a pub a day is calling time in the UK, with their attention clearly focussed on helping the man in the street to cope with cost rises.


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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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