Fire Break’ Will Destroy Welsh Pubs Without Stronger Financial Support Being Available To ALL Impacted Businesses

BBPA responds to lockdown announced for Wales

The British Beer & Pub Association, the leading trade association representing brewers and pubs, has today responded to the news that a ‘fire break’ lockdown will be introduced in Wales from 6pm on Friday 23rd October, forcing more than 3,000 pubs to shut until the 9th of November.

The Welsh Government announced that grants would be available for some pubs but the trade association says a “far stronger” package of financial support for all pubs, brewers and their supply chains in Wales will be needed if they are to survive a full lockdown. It says 37,000 sector jobs across Wales are at risk too without more support.

It says pubs in Wales were already struggling to survive with current restrictions in place including the 10pm curfew, rule of six, and travel ban, on top of low consumer confidence and reduced levels of tourism.

Closing down pubs as part of a ‘fire break’ lockdown, it says, will lead many to closing their doors forever unless there is a better package of financial support to help fully compensate all pubs, breweries and the wider supply chain for the lost revenue and to fully cover their high fixed costs.

Specifically, the trade association is calling for cash grants that fully cover lost revenue and high fixed costs for all pubs including those with a rateable value above £50k. Additionally, they call for this financial support to be available to breweries and pubs’ wider supply chain who may still be open, but now with a significant loss in revenue resulting from the overnight closure of a major business channel.

Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said:

“This ‘fire break’ in Wales will destroy many pubs, brewers and their supply chains in the country unless the financial support package is available to all businesses hit by the forced closure of all pubs.

“There are more than 3,000 pubs in Wales already struggling with the 10pm curfew, rule of six, lower levels of consumer confidence and tourism in addition to the more recent travel ban. A forced full closure will leave many of them fighting for their very survival.

“The financial support package announced today leaves many businesses impacted by this forced closure with no additional help. We need the cash grants to fully cover lost revenue and high fixed costs for all pubs including those with a rateable value above £50k. These grants must also be made available to breweries and pub’s wider supply chain who may still be open, but now face a significant loss in revenue resulting from the closure of a major business channel. They must be delivered to businesses quickly to avoid permanent closure through lack of cash flow.

“37,000 jobs linked to the sector are at risk too without more support.

“The Welsh Government must now urgently do the right thing and extend the availability of the full financial support package to all pubs no matter what their rateable value is, as well as to brewers and pubs’ other suppliers. This is to ensure they survive this fire break lockdown and will be able to serve their communities and to support thousands of local jobs and livelihoods once more.