Pub Code Adjudicator appointed (at last!).
Is he fit for Purpose?
Clearly it is with some surprise that our members get to know the appointment is a Fleurets surveyor (Mr Paul Newby – Director of Fleurets too) who has over a number of years acted predominately for one side of the argument, tenant groups such as PAS have always maintained that the Adjudicator should not be a chartered surveyor and that any such appointment will struggle to be accepted as independent by most tenants.
The attempt by the BIS to remove parallel rent assessment (PRA) from the draft pubs code in part 1 of the consultation back in Oct 2015 is wholly consistent with the stance taken by RICS who similarly wanted PRA to play no part in the pub’s code. The so called “cock-ups” Minister Anna Soubry went on to apologise for last year, were in reality far too sophisticated to have been written by inexperienced government officials waxing lyrical. It is our view that only trade experts with a higher knowledge could have created such detailed and well aimed “wrecking clauses” to be inserted into the highly controversial first draft of the pub’s code.
That said whoever sits as the Adjudicator still has to deliver on Government policy (and the will of both houses) to “level the playing field and ensure that the tied tenants are no worse off than a free of tie tenant”.
We expect the code to be published April so don’t forget the offer to buy tickets early to the PAS MRO event details here >
Note:-We have, as usual a well paid appointment to a Government Post of a Chartered Surveyor, whose previous post was a Director of Fleurets, a company with long term associations with the Pub Co’s, which makes his appointment by the larger majority of people working in the Industry questionable.
The immediate comment is, each side needs representation at the top, there should be two other people at the top with Mr Newby, a second Chartered Surveyor who has been solely involved with work for lessees/tenants and a third who is not a Surveyor who is totally neutral, but knowledgeable on the issues at stake, but wants to see total fairness and unite the industry, Mr Newby is unlikely to achieve this alone or with his long association of Fleurets.
Members of the RICS, in the main have never run pubs, have very little understanding of the diverse vagaries of licensees and English pubs, they work from some very questionable guidelines provided by the RICS, which have blown a hole through long accepted practices.
This link is worth reading and may make the learned Minister, reconsider using a sole adjudicator.