Save St Albans Pubs

Outside the Treasury (L-R) Christo Tofalli, Anne Main MP, Mandy McNeil, Sean Hughes and Alan Oliver
14th January 2019

St Albans MP Anne Main held a meeting with Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Robert Jenrick MP and representatives from Save St Albans Pubs today about the impact of business rates on pubs.

Following Mrs Main’s visit to many pubs in St Albans in November, the MP committed to raising this issue in parliament and with treasury ministers. Anne has also secured a debate in Parliament tomorrow on the negative impact business rate reform has had on many pubs and businesses in her constituency.

The business rate relief announced by the Chancellor in his budget in October provides a third off business rates for businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or below. However, in high value areas like St Albans, this reduction has not helped the majority of pubs, who have seen an increase in their business rates.

Save St Albans Pubs made their case to the treasury minister, saying that the announced cut in rates “hasn’t helped in St Albans” and while they accepted it was not the aim of the government to increase their rate payments, they said the measure “had the opposite effect” as it has put further pressure on their businesses.

Sean Hughes, Christo Tofalli, Mandy McNeil and Alan Oliver travelled to London on behalf of the campaign group to make the case for pubs in St Albans.

Speaking after the meeting, Anne Main MP said, “Save St Albans Pubs made an excellent case to the Minister. The government have to realise that this formula for calculating the rates is not helping to support local businesses and pubs in high value areas like mine. The system of taxing turnover and property value has meant that the aim of the cut will not help in areas like mine.

“I hope the Minister will engage with pubs in my constituency and the Treasury will consider offering a one third cut on rates up to the first £51,000. The current cliff edge of businesses with a rate of over £51,000 has not helped the many great pubs in St Albans.

“Ultimately, the whole system needs to be reviewed but as a first step I would urge the Minister to consider the one third cut for all pubs up to £51,000.

“I will once again make the case for pubs and local businesses in St Albans tomorrow during my debate on this issue.”

Photo: Outside the Treasury (L-R) Christo Tofalli, Anne Main MP, Mandy McNeil, Sean Hughes and Alan Oliver

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