The Pub Sector in Decline
The great British Pub is an iconic symbol throughout the world. Nobody does the village pub like the British. It is probably the thing that most expats miss the most. However many are under threat and nearly 50 a week shut, many never to re-open.
It is a very depressing statistic, especially for someone like me who is a real ale enthusiast. I like nothing better than travelling around the country finding new unspoilt pubs from those with chocolate box looks to the corner pub unchanged in 60 years. each has its own unique character.
However they are an endangered species. The landlord nowadays will generally find himself a tenant of a large pubco. The pubco exists to make money and hence rents are usually exorbitant. Often also the landlord is tied into taking beer which the pubco sells on to him at a far greater price than he could buy himself direct. The result is that in order to make any money the price of the typical pint may now be over £3. This is not a price that can be sustained in the current economic malaise. This is coupled with the fact that you can buy beer from a supermarket cheaper than you can buy water. People are therefore buying supermarket beer and drinking at home.
The government with its policy of racking up beer duty in the misguided and blunt attempt to stop binge drinking is exacerbating the already dire situation.
The result of all this is that prices are too high and so people only go out now and again. As turnover falls so the need to raise prices creeps in to cover costs which leads to less sales.
Eventually the rent cannot be paid and the tenant leaves, usually with a mountain of debt. Many ex landlords find themselves with no choice but bankruptcy.
Sometimes a bar can be saved if it is not tied to a pubco, via the pre-pack administration, but often it is a creditors voluntary liquidation with the lease sold on to a new enterprise.
Certain pubs can survive and indeed the British Public house has been around in some shape or form for 100’s of years and so it is almost a given that they will adapt and survive. The question is how many and in what form.
From Pub Lease To Marketing, What It Takes To Run Your Own Pub
A lot of people have a dream of managing their own pub one day. It is a very satisfying experience and can be financially rewarding too, but sometimes people enter into the pub game without knowing a huge amount about it. If you are thinking about taking over a pub lease then you should do plenty of research first to see if you think you will enjoy the experience. It can be a lot of hard work and there is no secret in the fact that running a pub can mean long hours. If you want to manage your own pub then first read this article so you can find out what is involved with the job.
First of all you will need to organise the lease. This will involve preparing a business plan, filling out an application form and going through a recruitment process. Once you have been selected you will be given the keys to your very own business. You will need capital available to you on top of the monthly rent money. You will need to purchase stock and other equipment and will need a lump sum available as working capital. As the tenant in the pub you will be responsible for carrying out minor repairs and maintenance works. If new glasses were needed, you would buy them. If the glass washer was to need repairing, you would pay to have it fixed. The brewery would take care of all major structural work to the building however.
With most breweries you enter into a supply agreement when taking on a lease from them. This means you have to buy all your drinks from them. This allows breweries to invest in their premises and ales and gives the consumer access to a good selection of quality products. Food however does not normally come under this same agreement. You are often able to purchase food and catering equipment from any supplier. As the landlord of your pub you can serve food if you wish (provided you have the kitchen space available.) You can choose what type of food you want to see and of course set your own prices. Whether you want to offer “basket” type meals or turn your establishment into the next gastropub, that is entirely up to you.
The brewery will be on hand to offer advice and help to any new landlord, however the day to day running of the pub is your job. That means you must be in charge of ordering supplies, running the bar and restaurant, hiring and firing and carrying out any marketing. The days can be long as there are afternoon and evening shifts to do. If you have a restaurant then there will be extra work too. A good idea is to talk to landlords of pubs in your area to find out what running a pub is like. It can be a fantastic way for couples to live especially and offers an opportunity of running your own business to those who otherwise might not have it. You can enjoy organising themed nights or carrying out marketing campaigns to get the word out about your new menu or special offers. There are a host of ways you can promote your business and turn your pub into a roaring success.
When you purchase a pub lease you are signing up to a challenge. Be prepared for some long days and hard work, but a feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment at the end of the day. Managing a pub is not for everyone, however if you think you are up for the challenge then you should begin by seeking out possible premises. There are pub tenancy vacancies available in all parts of the UK so your dream pub could be just around the corner.