MP fights to save community pubs from late-night levy

By Matt Eley Matt

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Community pubs, Shut up, Public house, Opening, Greg mulholland

Moves to protect community pubs from having to pay a charge for opening late at night have been started by a campaigning MP. Greg Mulholland,...

Moves to protect community pubs from having to pay a charge for opening late at night have been started by a campaigning MP.

Greg Mulholland, chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Save the Pub Group, has raised his concerns about proposals for a late-night levy with Home Office minister James Brokenshire.

The coalition government's plan is designed to compensate police for costs incurred due to alcohol-related crime.

Mulholland said: "The proposed late-night levy is too broad and takes no account of the fact that some community pubs now choose to open a little a later on a Friday or Saturday night.

"In actual fact, having community pubs open a bit later can be a positive thing, rather than the old days of everyone who wanted a pint after 11pm being forced to go to nightclubs and bars.

"This legislation needs to be better targeted so the venues contributing to the cost of policing are only those that cause a problem and must not lead to people once again not having the option of a sociable pint at the weekend."

And Mike Benner, chief executive of CAMRA, warned that the levy could force premises to shut up shop at 11pm.

He said: "Well-run community pubs and not for profit members clubs should not be forced to return to a uniform 11pm closing time as the result of the threat of a late-night opening levy.

"Any late-night levy should only be applied to those late night licensed premises which can be shown to contribute to public nuisance and disorder.

"This should include those supermarkets and off-licences which sell alcohol at irresponsibly low prices which encourages drinking on our streets and in our public parks."

Related topics: Licensing law

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