Business Rates – Brigid Simmonds Welcomes Review Of Transitional Relief And Reiterates Call For Wider Pub Reforms

Brigid Simmonds, BBPA Chief Executive, comments:

“There is a huge need for more transitional relief for the pubs most badly affected, so this review is welcome. It should also look at moving large pubs, whose turnover does not necessarily reflect their profitability,  into a category where their first year increase will be capped.

“However, a wider review is needed, so that the Government can consider the specific needs of the pub sector, which should have its own system of relief, given we are shouldering such an unfair share of the rates burden.  The BBPA believes that pubs are overpaying business rates by £500 million.

“I was therefore pleased that Sajid Javid specifically mentioned the need for a level playing field.  In our whole campaign on business rates, we have always been clear that businesses with on-line sales must make a bigger contribution, so that we can protect pubs from excessive rates bills. Rates are already an unfair tax on pubs, but we then we also have to contend with other huge tax burdens, not least of which is beer duty.

“Finally, it’s great that the Secretary of State agreed to visit a pub badly affected by a rates rise, as were his positive remarks about the vital role pubs play in our communities. This should put pubs high up the agenda when considering rates reform.