What now for self-regulation of the pub sector in the interim?
ALMR Press Notice
Statutory Code draws a line under damaging uncertainty, says ALMR Responding to today’s publication of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill, which will introduce a Statutory Code for pub companies, the ALMR has hailed the end of prolonged uncertainty and the establishment of clarity for British publicans.
The Bill will also introduce a Pubs Adjudicator, based on the Groceries Code Adjudicator, to rule on disputes and contains a triennial review provision to assess the continued effectiveness and necessity of the statutory regulations.
ALMR Strategic Affairs Director Kate Nicholls said: “We are pleased to see the Government has finally set out its position on the relationship between pubcos and their tenants.
This draws a line under a long period of uncertainty which has undoubtedly hampered investment in our sector.
“The publication of today’s Bill provides some helpful clarity on the way in which the Government intends to proceed in this area and confirms that they will move swiftly to implement these measures.
The focus on rent calculations, transparency of information provided by the pub company and the ability to request a review in exceptional circumstances is also to be welcomed.
That for us remains key, and we are pleased that the Bill commits Ministers to act within the year.
“We do, however, want to understand how the Code will apply to short term temporary agreements and to agreements entered into before the Bill’s provisions take effect.
This is hinted at but not set out in any detail on the face of the Bill. And of course, the devil remains in the detail of the Code’s actual clauses, which will only be determined at a later date.
The draft published by BIS is a good overview, but there is much work still to do to ensure that it delivers statutory regulation at least as comprehensive as the current voluntary Code.
“The sector needs stability and consistency to ensure a fair, free and flexible market and its continued ability to promote jobs and growth right across the UK.”
Michael Clarke Public Affairs Executive Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers 9b Walpole Court, Ealing Studios, London, W5 5ED Tel: 020 8579 2080 Mob: 07857 302 876
Note:-The bad Pub Co’s will fight tooth and nail to water down a statutory code, the decent pub owning companies will seek to accommodate any legislation and appreciate stability within the industry, we hope.