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04th Sep 2022

Pubs will have to hike pint prices to £20 each to avoid closure this winter

Jack Peat

Pub running costs are expected to increase by 500-600 per cent

Pubs have been told to substantially hike pint prices or face closure as the cost of living crisis intensifies this winter.

Tom Stainer, the chief executive of real campaign group CAMRA, said the increase in energy prices will cause running costs at pubs to increase by 500-600 per cent, putting an enormous amount of establishments at risk of closure.

Speaking to the Daily Star, he said: “How much would 500 per cent be on a £5 pint – you’re talking ridiculous amounts of money, 15 or 20 quid for a pint.”

He said there was a “perfect storm” of factors that “will affect just about every pub out there”.

But despite prices of a pint creeping up across the country, the actual increases needed to sustain boozers in this situation are so enormous that they aren’t realistically going to happen.

“What you can say with surety is you can’t possibly pass on these energy increases and you can’t increase the pint by 500 per cent,” he said.

“You’d be talking about pounds of pounds added on to the average cost per pint – and we already know because we did a survey this summer that more than 50 per cent of the British public now believe the cost of a pint is already unaffordable.

“And that was done before the cost of living crisis before everyone was looking at their own money. And before these huge energy bills came in.

“It just isn’t viable for pubs to pass [price hikes this big] on to consumers because people wouldn’t come drink at pubs anyway.”

Stainer called for government intervention to keep pubs afloat this winter, saying they need to step in and do something about energy costs, business rates and the taxes people pay on beer.

Pubs pay one of the “largest business rates of any business [type]” compared to other businesses and few have any money stored away “for a rainy day” because they used it all in the pandemic, he said.

“With a new prime minister stepping in, the top of their inbox is going to be doing some help for hospitality”, Stainer added.

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