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Policy Makers Can Do More to Drive Growth

New-ALMR-logo1Coinciding with the publishing of the report on pubs in England, the ALMR has emphasised the positive role of pubs and is reminding Government and local authorities of the need to do more to support them.

The Campaign for Real Ale and the Local Government Information Unit today published its report: Public Houses: How councils and communities can save pubs, with advice for local authorities to promote pubs in their areas.

ALMR Strategic Affairs Director, Kate Nicholls said: “The report highlights the positive impact and the pivotal role pubs play at the heart of our communities across the country. This is a sector which employs around 10% of the workforce and contributes over £209,000 gross value added per outlet.

“As the reports states however, despite being the home of some of the most vibrant businesses in the country, there is still much more which can be done to help stimulate licensed hospitality in the UK and ease financial and regulatory restrictions on businesses.

“National Planning Policy Framework states that planning decisions should plan positively in setting local strategic plans. Too often though, we are failing to see National Policy Framework being translated into individual licensing and planning decisions at a local level.

“Planning constraints, restrictive lease terms and inaccurate rateable values hamper the sector’s ability to increase its contribution in the local economy. Current restrictions surrounding leases are encouraging a short-term mentality and curbing investments in businesses. We are also fighting against an outrageous planning arrangement which allows pubs to be converted into supermarkets with virtually no opposition.

“The ALMR’s Manifesto calls on all regulators, including local authorities to have regard to economic growth in their decisions. We would like to see local authorities working much more closely with the sector, acknowledging the restraints and burdens on businesses and working to provide us with a fairer, more flexible playing field on which we can continue to drive growth.”

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