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Fri 29th Sep 2017 - Trip to the pub becoming ‘unaffordable luxury’, CAMRA warns chancellor
Trip to the pub becoming ‘unaffordable luxury’, CAMRA warns chancellor: The traditional trip to the pub is becoming an “unaffordable luxury” as only 15% of British beer drinkers think the price of a pint is “very” or “fairly” affordable, according to new research by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), which will present its study to the chancellor ahead of November’s budget. CAMRA is calling for permanent £5,000 business rates relief for all pubs in England as well as a freeze or cut in beer duty for the duration of this parliament. It said with four in ten pubs experiencing a business rates rise, thousands of community pubs could be wiped off the map. In some cases, English pubs will need to sell more than 20,000 extra pints of beer a year to cover business rates rises, the campaign group said, leading landlords to put up prices or shut up shop. CAMRA national chairman Colin Valentine said: “The opportunity to get together and enjoy a beer is being taken away from swathes of people on lower and middle incomes, who are increasingly viewing a pub pint as an unaffordable luxury. Many landlords are in a tricky situation in that they are forced to either raise their prices or close their doors forever. The people on lower incomes will be hit hardest and choose to drink at home. In addition, thousands of local pubs are at risk of closure, bringing devastating consequences for their local communities. The chancellor must take urgent action in this Budget if we are to keep pub-going a social activity open to all and prevent local pubs from being wiped off the map.” CAMRA’s evidence to the chancellor will also point out each pub pays almost £140,000 in taxes each year on average, with about 37% of the total cost of a pint now made up of taxes.

Devon bar scoops best cider award: A bar in Devon that only sells cider, perry and fruit wine has been named Cider Pub of the Year by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA). Ye Olde Cider Bar in Newton Abbot has become the only pub to win the award twice following its victory in 2011. The pub has sold cider for more than 100 years and offers a wide range of varieties sourced from independent producers. Landlords Jonathan McCool and Kim Leonard took over the pub in November 2015 after Richard Knibbs had run it for more than 40 years. McCool said: “Despite the continuous pressures on the pub trade, we have endeavoured to continue the legacy of Ye Olde Cider Bar. We have worked hard to become a hub for cider and perry, sourcing a wide range of produce from small local businesses and building on the fantastic reputation of the bar.” Cider Pub of the Year organiser Sarah Newson said: “Ye Olde Cider Bar’s success is a clear indicator of the fantastic range of quality real cider and perry available.”

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