BBPA urges publicans to respond to World Cup licensing hours consultation

By Ellie Bothwell

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: World cup, Public house

BBPA chief Brigid Simmonds: 'I encourage publicans and fans to make their voice heard by responding to the consultation'
BBPA chief Brigid Simmonds: 'I encourage publicans and fans to make their voice heard by responding to the consultation'
The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) is urging publicans to respond to the Home Office’s consultation to decide whether to relax licensing hours during England matches in the World Cup 2014.

Licensees are now able to submit their views on the impact of a relaxation and the duration and geographical extent it should apply to. The consultation closes on 26 March 2014.

If approved, it means all pubs would be able to stay open and sell alcohol during all England matches with a schedule kick-off time of 8pm or later.

BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “We welcome this consultation as an opportunity to make clear the wish of publicans, the wider industry and most importantly England fans to enjoy World Cup 2014 in their local pub – the next best thing to being there.

“Over the next fortnight I encourage publicans and fans to make their voice heard by responding to the consultation."

She added: “We will be asking for a four hour extension after kick-off. This is not just because there are group matches starting at 8pm, or later, but also to ensure we have a smooth dispersal from venues. 

“It is not in the interest of the police and local authorities that everyone leaves venues the second a game finishes.  Some extra time, allowing for a well-managed and smooth dispersal, will be very helpful for everyone.”

The consultation was launched after Prime Minister David Cameron “ordered a rethink” on pub opening times for the World Cup, a day after the Home Office said it had ruled out extending licensing hours.

An application on behalf of all pubs had been submitted to allow them to stay open from 23:00 to 01:00 on 13 and 14 June, the opening weekend of the tournament, and the BBPA had also asked for an extra two hours on the closing weekend, 11 and 12 July.

To view the consultation visit the Home Office website​.

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