Gordon Ramsay 'TV pub' gets 140% rent increase

By The Morning Advertiser

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Rent review Gordon ramsay

Gordon Ramsay 'TV pub' gets 140% rent increase
A Punch licensee who appeared on Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares last week has hit out at his pubco after a huge rent rise five hours before the show was screened.

Brian Rey, who has run the Fenwick Arms, in Claughton, Lancashire, for three years, said his BRM had told him the rent should increase from £16,000 a year to £38,000 a year.

Rey said: "Gordon called after the show was screened and was appalled when I told him the news.

"Punch has been fantastic in the past but this has really put the kibosh on things."

Rey moved into the pub three years ago with his partner, Elaine, when it was closed. He has raised turn-over to the £6,000-a-week mark - around £2,000 short of break-even.

"The pub had nine licensees in the years before we arrived. "We've spent £250,000 in borrowings and savings here sorting the pub out - a mind-blowing amount of money."

Rey said that his BRM, Mark Elliott, has ignored the Punch code of practice on rent reviews, which includes notification of a rent review 12 months prior and a meeting six months before the due date to talk through how new rent figures have been arrived at.

"We had a phone call a number of months ago to say a review was due but nothing else,"​ he said.

"The BRM's view is that there is no timing that's good for a rent review."

Rey added that business seems to be booming after his Gordon Ramsay's visit was aired. He took 120 bookings for Sunday lunch at the weekend - up from the normal figure of about 45.

His BRM called at the end of last week to say he would calling by.

"I told him he needed to make an appointment like everybody else."

 Punch response:

A spokesperson from Punch Taverns, said: "We contacted Mr Rey in January 2006 to confirm that the anniversary of his three-year rent review was approaching.

"During this time Mr Rey has been on a subsidised short-term agreement to help him get his business up and running.

"In addition, we have given him further support through a range of packages including a refurbishment of the property, marketing initiatives and new fixtures and fittings.

"Mr Rey's rent review date is now overdue and bears no relationship to any publicity the pub may currently be benefiting from. We use an industry-standard means of assessment when calculating rent."

A Punch source insisted Mr Rey's BRM had called to wish him luck on the show and had only revealed the figures when asked if there was any news on the rent review front.

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