A Parliamentary Save the Pub Group meeting saw vice chair Louise Haigh MP and chair Greg Mulholland MP call on the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) to set the new date in stone.
Tenants have been so far left in the dark over their future, and some have already been denied MRO.
At the meeting Mulholland noted that BIS had a year to correctly draft the code but had failed to meet the deadline or give any indication of when the code would be published.
The British Pub Confederation (BPC) and the Publican’s Morning Advertiser’s editor Ed Bedington have criticised the delay, and put pressure on the ‘big six’ pubcos of Punch, Enterprise, Greene King, Marston’s, Admiral and Star to honour the original date of May 26, but so far none have committed to doing so.
Haigh said:“The Government may have their mind on other things but there is absolutely no excuse for the delay in the introduction of the Pubs Code which is leaving tenants in limbo.
“Tenants across the country will be infuriated by the Government’s lackadaisical approach – it’s time they got their act together and urgently put the code before Parliament.”
The BPC estimate for every month the Code is delayed, 220 pub tenants will miss out on their right to the Market Rent Only option.
Mulholland, chair of the BPC, added: “It is essential that the government issue a statement saying when the pubs code will be implemented, and state that the code will apply retrospectively from when the code was meant to be in place.
“Right now tied pub tenants are being denied their legal right to the market rent only option, and the longer BIS delay the code, the more tenants will miss out. BIS have let down these tenants by delaying the code, and must now get the code in place as soon as possible and ensure it is retrospective.”