Thwaites defends use of restrictive covenants

By Hamish Champ

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Restrictive covenants, Lancashire, Blackburn

Daniel Thwaites, the Lancashire brewer, has defended its decision to sell eight of its pubs with restrictive covenants, effectively meaning the sites...

Daniel Thwaites, the Lancashire brewer, has defended its decision to sell eight of its pubs with restrictive covenants, effectively meaning the sites cannot continue to trade as licensed premises.

The pubs are located in Blackburn, Accrington, Colen, Darwen and Padiham.

Officials from the local Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) organisation argued that new owners should be given the right to try their hand at making these pubs a success.

But Thwaites said the decision centred on 'de-pubbing' an area to enable those remaining sites to have a chance of prospering.

Restricting the future use of a pub up for sale was one of the practices condemned by MPs sitting on the Business & Enterprise Select Committee, and subsequently a number of companies pledged to drop the use of such covenants.

However after what it described as "much soul-searching and deliberation" Thwaites decided to place such restrictions on the eight pubs it is looking to sell.

In a statement director of pub operation Andrew Buchanan said the company did not employ restrictive covenants lightly.

"In every case where Daniel Thwaites has employed a restrictive covenant, it has done so after much soul searching and deliberation. Every pub is dealt with on a case by case basis.

"The only motivation for Daniel Thwaites in this regard is to 'de-pub' areas where high pub density is detrimental to the survival of the trade as a whole.

"We are trying to encourage a viable pub industry in the teeth of all of the pressures currently faced by the sector as a whole."

Buchanan said Thwaites put restrictive covenants in place "only after in-depth consideration of a variety of factors including large scale demographic change, deindustrialisation and/or company over representation".

Related topics: Property law

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