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Wed 20th Apr 2016 - Govt agrees to meet BBPA over 'unworkable' Pubs Code
Government agrees to discuss Pubs Code with BBPA: The government has stated it will meet over the soon-to-be-implemented Pubs Code with the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA), which has attacked key sections of the code as “unworkable”. The Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) said it would meet the BBPA after the industry body slammed the new statutory code last week for not providing sufficient transition period, as well as issues with dry-rent and claims the code could hold back entrepreneurs seeking to enter the pub industry. A BIS spokesperson told City AM: “The Pubs Code seeks to ensure that the 12,000 tied-tenants in England and Wales can operate in an environment that is fair and allows them to thrive. Tenants will be provided with the protections of the code as of the statutory deadline of 26 May. We will meet with the BBPA shortly to discuss their concerns.” The Pubs Code will regulate the relationship between tied pub tenants and the large pub-owning operators that rent the pubs to them and sell tied products. It will apply to all operators owning 500 or more tied pubs in England and Wales. It will be implemented through the newly created role of a Pubs Code Adjudicator. On Friday, BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds branded key aspects of the Pubs Code as “unworkable”, such as the proposal that the “waiver for investment can only be entered into where the investment is at least 200% of dry rent (eg £50,000 rent and £100,000 investment) and for a maximum of seven years”. She said: “This puts at huge risk much of the £200m capital invested each year by pub companies in their tied pubs and will ultimately lead to further closures.”

Brains to open flagship £1.25m venue tomorrow in Cardiff Bay: Cardiff-based brewer and retailer Brains is set to open a major new venue in Cardiff Bay tomorrow (Thursday, 21 April). Occupying a primary position in Mermaid Quay, the renamed business, The Dock, is aimed to be keeping with Cardiff Bay’s history as the multicultural, cosmopolitan base from which cargo was once shipped to countries across the world. A £1.25m refurbishment has seen the creation of a trading area totalling more than 6,700 square feet with 191 ground floor covers and a further 221 first floor covers in the iconic building previously occupied by Terra Nova. The addition of extra glazing now affords guests stunning views over Cardiff Bay and the surrounding areas and floods the space with natural light. A central island bar on the ground floor features a 32-foot back bar that cuts through into the first floor space carrying atmosphere and light through the venue. Outside redevelopment of the retail demise has seen the creation of an enclosed space with waterside views. Example menu items include vodka battered fish, panko crumbed goat’s cheese, and Wagyu beef, as well as discovery craft beers, exotic cocktails – such as a “Far East Discovery” and ‘“Hoppy Collins” – as well as iconic gins in new flavours and serves. The new venue has created 60 jobs. Bruce Newman, head of marketing for Brains, The Dock, said: “Over the past decade, Cardiff Bay has established itself as a vibrant location and we’re now in a brilliant position to introduce something completely new to the area. The distinctive food and drink offering, coupled with its iconic waterside location with stunning views across the Bay, will help position it as the go-to venue at the very heart of Mermaid Quay. The Dock will be unlike anything else the area has to offer but, importantly, will be entirely in keeping with Cardiff Bay’s important cultural and industrial heritage The Dock will be a flagship venue for Brains and the business is enormously excited by the opening and the potential of the concept.”

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