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UK: Recession pushes 52 pubs out of biz every week

Source: PTI
July 22, 2009 17:30 IST
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The economic recession hasn't spared even pubbing in Britain for as many as 52 pubs are going out of business every week resulting in thousands of job losses.

Bogged down by economic pressures and regulatory burdens more than 7 pubs are shutting down every day on an average in the country, according to the British Beer Pub Association.

A record 52 pubs a week are now closing in Britain leading to the loss of 24,000 jobs in the last year," BBPA said in a statement on Wednesday.

The members of the association account for 98 per cent of the beer brewed in the UK and own about two-thirds of the country's 54,000 pubs.

Over the last 12 months, a whopping 2,377 pubs have been closed which has resulted in 24,000 jobs being lost.

In the last 3 years, a total of 5,134 pubs have gone out  of business. There are now 53,466 pubs in Britain, the association noted.

"The recession is proving extremely tough for Britain's pubs. . . However, those economic pressures have been made worse by a government that has continued to pile on tax and regulatory burdens," BBPA chief executive David Long said.

"Food seems key to some sustainability. Pubs that focus mostly on selling drink are shutting shop at the rate of 51 a week, while those that focus more on food are closing at one a week," the association said. Long said the government should commit not to increase the cost and complexities to run a pub by stepping back from any more tax or red-tape increases.

The association noted that the country's last two budgets have seen a 20 per cent rise in beer tax, which alone has added more than 600 million pounds to the tax bill.

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