Thursday, November 20, 2014

Compilation of articles about the 'end' of the beer tie

Brits to Get Cheaper Beer!
(If They Can Still Find a Pub to Sell It)

Pub shares slide after vote to break beer 'tie'


And a little bit of comment somewhere else in response to someone saying another publican was 'naive' and by implication worthy of being shafted by a pubco

That is exactly right ******* that is how the pubco's have got away with it for so long. Because people like you casually dismiss their absolutely unacceptable behaviour as being somehow 'okay' because people are 'naive'

Well, I am not naive and many of the highly successful publicans I know who run multiple sites that are tied are not naive either but they don't make enough money out of their tied pubs to be able to walk away, and few of them are profitable enough for anyone to want to buy, they are trapped with their pubco's taking all the profit. These people do not speak out against the beer tie because they have too much to lose... and there are thousands of individual publicans out there in the trap too, intimidated by their pubco staff, harried, bullied and treated like slaves, because they can.

Before I came into the pub trade as the owner of a tied lease I was among the most experienced restaurateurs around. I had worked in every position from kitchen to front of house senior management in some of the busiest restaurants in Britain, including River Cafe, Kensington Place, Joe Allens, Ed's Diner and two of Manchester's busiest places as well. I had managed two restaurants in the West End and been general manager of a high profile Mayfair club and restaurant for three years. Then I ran my own landscaping business for six years before I taking on a tied lease in 1995 (which was advertised as becoming free of tie in 1998, it did not). I invested £200K in the premises over a period of 16 years and left in 2011, my entire life in ruins, my life savings stolen from me, times ten, my family split up, had had two nervous breakdowns, appeared in High Court to represent myself after spending £47K on legal fees over a rent review I ended up losing to an arbitrator who took fictitious figures the pubco presented as evidence of my business's ability to afford against real income figures he ignored, according to RICS guidelines that is, to be evicted, bankrupted, made homeless for three years...

Mind you I can tell you that all that has been worthwhile now, because to see this vile English, for it is English not British, hegemony begin to come to an end has validated everything I ever stood up to against those bullies who treated me and so many thousands of other people as if they were medieval land barons crushing the lives of serfs...

As we're on about it here's a short film that CAMRA commissioned that covers a little of my experience, and a couple of other very competent not naive publicans who've also been shafted as a matter of course along the way...

This is a comment I left on The Guardian because it needed to be said 
It's a shame the article doesn't go into more depth following a little more in depth research. The legislation was drafted by publicans with politicians alongside and is NOT a case of 'government meddling' and is easily 20 years overdue. That the beer tie has been around for 400 years as some kind of benign deliverer of beer to market is a romantic myth promoted by the BBPA,, the trade organisation for Big Brewers and Pubco's, which does not represent a single independent publican or small brewer. The BBPA exists to promote the myth that the beer tie is fit for purpose. It is not and it has, like any unsupervised legal contract, a history of abuse as long as its existence. Which is why in the end it was voted against and passed against a strong Tory three line whip aiming to maintain the grotesquely iniquitous status quo. On Thursday Government conceded it would send the amendment to the Lords unopposed so, some unforeseen argy bargy by the pubco's aside, law will change in March 2015 and tied publicans will for the first time in history have some autonomy on the pricing of their beer supplies.
Anyone reading this now may like to know that a campaign group of publicans called Fair Pint and a forum called Licensees Supporting Licensees were involved in the background to the legislation being drafted. Just saying for the record because no one ever listens to publicans, they just talk about them as if they are cardboard cut outs. They are not, They are the people who generate all the profit for the entire pub sector.

No comments:

Post a Comment