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Government has 24 hours to save pubs says BBPA

Following Boris Johnson’s and Rishi Sunak’s press conference today on measures the Government is taking to support businesses through COVID-19 – including pubs – the British Beer & Pub Association has responded demanding immediate action.

Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “We recognise as a sector that we are in unprecedented times and are prepared to play our part, but whilst we welcome the measures outlined today, they do not deal with the immediate cash flow and liquidity problems our industry faces.

“Local Authorities paying out grants to pub businesses is welcome, but how quickly these are administered is critical to keeping pubs in business and employees in jobs beyond the coming weeks.  

“The rates relief announced for pubs is welcome in principle, but we urgently need greater clarity on the detail. Such relief provides little comfort for pubs that have no income.

“Without an urgent cash injection our sector will need to reduce its biggest cost, labour. It also won’t be able to take advantage of the planning changes proposed by Government today enabling pubs to help feed the nation through delivery.

“The Government literally has 24 hours to put together a pub specific package to prevent irreversible closures and job losses. The pub industry stands ready to work with the Government to create the rescue package that is needed.”