Axing of Beer Orders not likely to effect property market

Related tags Beer orders Public house

The revocation of the Beer Orders will make little difference to the licensed property market, according to Colin Wellstead, director of Christie...

The revocation of the Beer Orders will make little difference to the licensed property market, according to Colin Wellstead, director of Christie & Co.

Mr Wellstead (pictured)​ said the Government's plans to revoke the Orders, announced last month, would not lead to a "reversal of the trends we have seen in the market for the last decade".

"The general consensus is that the Beer Orders weren't working and so a big change, with pub companies buying breweries for instance, is unlikely, in my opinion," he said.

The Beer Orders, introduced by the Government in 1989, meant the big brewers had to sell a large chunk of their pub estates and led to the rise of pub companies such as Enterprise Inns, Pubmaster and a host of smaller operators now largely consolidated into big groups.

Although Mr Wellstead admitted the Beer Orders were now out of date and unnecessary he said they had been very important in shaping the pub trade into what it is today. "They were the catalyst for much of the change we have seen," he said.

The "plethora" of new pub operators entering the market in the years after the Beer Orders were introduced, did not, as some expected, mean the end for the freehouse market, Mr Wellstead said.

Instead it created "a myriad of opportunities for both newcomers to the market and for existing operators keen to trade up to a bigger pub or to expand their portfolios".

Mr Wellstead said an important aspect of the effect the Beer Orders have had on the market is the rationalisation of pub estates.

"Corporate operators now need to rationalise their estates to make sure they only keep those outlets that fit their trading concepts or their aspirations," he said.

"This has meant that hundreds of pubs have come to the market following major takeover and merger deals - many of which have been snapped up by independent operators."

He said he was confident the market, particularly for freehouses, would remain strong despite the end of the Beer Orders.

A strong domestic housing market has helped the pub trade in recent months - and shows no signs of stopping. Low interest rates have also had a positive effect.

Mr Wellstead said: "In such a climate, we believe this process of acquisition and rationalisation will continue throughout 2002, providing considerable opportunities for independents."


We asked: Do you think the revocation of the Beer Orders will damage the trade? This is how you voted:
Yes​:152 Votes (73%)
No​:56 Votes (27%)

Related topics Beer

Property of the week


- Leasehold

Village position close to Reading and Newbury Extensively renovated public house Bar, conservatory, snug and function room (80-90) Four en suite letting bedrooms Two bedroom owner/staff accommodation Part-covered trade garden...

Follow us

Pub Trade Guides

View more