New rules unveiled by the government will help pub tenants battling to pay rent or beer costs in Cumbria, South Lakes MP Tim Farron has said today.
Landlords tied to large pub companies have said they are struggling to make a decent living, with more than half claiming they earn less than the minimum wage.
The Government will give landlords the right to request a rent review after five years, as well as set up an independent adjudicator with the power to resolve disputes.
Tim said: "Local pubs and their owners play a vital part in vibrant local communities right across Cumbria as well as making an important contribution to the economy. The pub is the hub of many communities. But far too many landlords feel their income is squeezed by big pub companies. This is something I have long pushed for action on.
"So, I'm delighted that we are taking action to make sure they get a fairer deal."
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg added: "British pubs are often the centre of our community, a place where we meet friends, watch sport and enjoy a Sunday roast. They are a national treasure and the envy of the world.
"They also contribute billions to our economy every year. But for too long, landlords tied to larger pub companies have struggled to make ends meet. Half of UK landlords earn less than the minimum wage.
"The self-regulatory approach has not worked, so these new rules will give fairer treatment for landlords so that they can keep your local pub going strong."
Tied tenants have to buy beer from their owning company, and usually pay a higher price for it. This should be balanced out by subsidised rent or other benefits they may receive from their pub company, but this may not happen and rents can be too high. However, under the new code, pub landlords will benefit from fairer rent assessments.
Research by Oxford Economics showed that in Westmorland and Lonsdale there are 9 breweries and 133 pubs, providing direct employment to 1,747 local people and a further 310 indirect and 514 induced jobs.
The research also showed that pubs within the South Lakes are worth an estimated £48.6 million gross value added per year.
Tim is well known as a long time campaigner for our pub trade and is a member of CAMRA. A recent study by CAMRA (the Campaign for Real Ale) shows that two pubs in the United Kingdom are closing every day.
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