BII Calls For All Pubs To Engage With Their MPS This Summer, Ahead Of The Autumn Budget

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has announced the launch of their #MyPub campaign, calling on pubs across the UK to write to their MPs, and invite them to visit their vital local businesses at the heart of their constituencies. This will allow them to show MPs the positive impact their businesses have within their communities, share the realities of trading, and ask for their support in gaining the investment needed to be the engine of growth in their local economy.

Against a backdrop of positive trading and increased turnovers for many operators, business remains incredibly tough as they weather the impact of huge price increases and inflationary costs over the past year. Whilst many pubs are seeing their turnovers return to pre-pandemic levels, sky-high and unfair energy costs, multiple price rises on food, drink and other business essentials, as well as continued staff shortages, have meant a huge drop in profitability.

Despite the rate of inflation decreasing slightly, these costs are now locked into their businesses, with survey data from CGA this week revealing one in seven hospitality businesses remain at risk of failure in the next 12 months.

Our nations’ pubs are vibrant, viable and essential community hubs, who have been unfairly overtaxed for decades and this, alongside the phenomenal cost increases across the board has impacted their cash reserves and future growth prospects.

Both the Chancellor and the Prime Minister have regularly referenced pubs as a “treasured community institution” and pubs now need explicit support from Government to ensure they can be at the heart of growth in the economy.

Steve Alton, BII CEO commented: “Our members need investment to power their growth and are simply asking for the playing field to be levelled, allowing them the opportunity to deliver their full potential and support their local communities as they do so. For the longest time, they have shouldered the burden of unfair taxes when compared to other high street venues or online businesses.

“We have seen the positive impact that the current Business Rates relief has had, giving operators a little bit of breathing space as they face ridiculously high energy prices and food, drink and wage inflation. With inflation still dangerously high, they now need some longer-term surety to enable them to plan for the future growth of their businesses.

“We are calling on Government to reduce the tax burden on our members and pubs across the country, by providing longer term structural support with a priority to reduce VAT, as well as a continuation of the current Business Rates relief for a further three years.

“The #MyPub campaign will see operators inviting MPs to visit their incredible pubs over the summer, showing them just how important their venue is, supporting local skilled jobs, local supply chains and entire communities.

“Pubs are places where life-long connections are made and nurtured, and there is no better way for leaders in local communities and Government to see first-hand the impact that they have, and the support that they need to continue to do their amazing work.”

For more information about the #MyPub campaign, and to get involved, please visit the BII’s website.