The relief is being offered as part of a Government scheme to help reduce the cost of business rates for pubs in England with a rateable value of less than £100,000.
Manchester City Council is calling on pubs in the city to apply for the relief. It has written to 223 pubs in the city that have a rateable value of less than £100,000. However, despite writing to them with details of the scheme, fewer than 50 have so far claimed the relief.
To be eligible, pubs must be an occupied property with a rateable value of less than £100,000, be open to the public, allow drinking without the purchase of food, allow free entry other than when occasional entertainment is provided, and permit drinks to be purchased at the bar.
Councillor John Flanagan, Manchester City Council’s executive member for finance and human resources, said: “I would urge all eligible pubs to take advantage of the scheme. It’s quick and easy to apply and it could save you up to £1,000 from your business rates bill.“
The British Beer & Pub Association welcomed the move.
Chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “It is great to see Manchester taking action and I would like to see all local councils following suit. While some councils have moved forward, including some that have already implemented the relief directly, others have been slow to ensure that pubs get the business rates relief they are entitled to."
Earlier this month, Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and ex-Pubs Minister Marcus Jones put local authorities under pressure to provide rate relief to pubs.
He said he had written to local authorities that had not fully implemented three rate relief schemes, including the one that covered the pub sector, asking them to re-bill businesses.
There has been concern about the delay in local authorities sending out information and granting relief.