CAMRA research

Pub closures falling - but still 27 shutting every week

By Oli Gross contact

- Last updated on GMT

CAMRA research finds 27 pubs closing a week

Related tags: Local community pubs, Public house, Beer

Pub closures have slowed slightly to 27 a week as the industry begins a ‘fragile recovery’, according to the Campaign for Real Ale’s latest research.

But the news brings fresh calls from CAMRA for Government to cut beer duty in this year’s Budget to help keep drink affordable and pubs open.

Stats

The figures compiled by independent research company CGA Strategy show that 27 pubs a week closed in the second half of 2015, compared to 29 a week in the previous six months​.

The fall has largely been driven by the drop in closures of local community pubs, down from 26 closures a week to 20.

The research supports a report from the Centre of Economics and Business Research last year, which showed pubs and drinkers would benefit from a cut in beer tax.

Beer duty

If there was no cut last year, it's estimated that beer would have increased by 16p a pint, more than 1,000 additional pubs would have closed, 750 million fewer pints would have been sold and 26,000 jobs would not have been created had the beer tax not been cut in 2014​.

Tim Page, chief executive of CAMRA said: "The latest figures show that the work of campaigners across CAMRA, the wider pub and beer industry and the government is taking effect and arresting the decline in the number of pubs being lost every week.

"However it's a fragile recovery which could very quickly be reversed if the government fails to build on this positive development and misses the chance to support the British pub and beer industry by reducing tax again.

Call for support

More than 3,000 CAMRA members have already lobbied their MPs to call for a reduction in beer duty and the campaign has urged people to make their views known via camra.org.uk/beertax2016.

"The report produced by CEBR for CAMRA at the start of 2015 showed how cutting beer tax would have a great economic benefit for the country and the reduction in closure numbers is further proof that the Chancellor's decision was a good one,” Page said.

"It's pleasing to see that our campaigning to protect community pubs is having an effect, with closure numbers reducing. Local pubs are vital to their communities and the wellbeing of their users, as a recent report from Oxford University showed.

“As well as reducing tax the government can continue to support these pubs by strengthening national planning regulations and supporting local groups seeking to list pubs as Assets of Community Value."

Community locals are particularly vital to the overall well-being of their users, as shown by CAMRA's recently released research into the benefits of pub going.

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