Pub companies: follow-up - Business, Innovation and Skills Committee Contents

Memorandum submitted by Alan Turner

  My wife has a lease with Punch Taverns, she works 60 hours a week and has not been paid for nearly a year. Each month is a struggle just to make the bills and she is only battling on because each month the money she will still owe, yes, owe when she moves out goes down with each loan payment.

  She is paying in combined wet and dry rent more than 60% of her entire net turnover to Punch Taverns. On a turnover of £148k she is paying over £30,000 in dry rent alone by way of combined costs invoiced by Punch. Last week her takings were £3,150 but her payments to Punch totalled over £2,100, with that £1,150 she is expected to pay staff, and all operating costs as well as put money aside for VAT, it just is not possible. She has been made promises for over four years regarding repairs and upkeep, I used to own a buy-to-let property and I would be ashamed to take money from people living in such accommodation as we do.

  These Pub Cos will not change, they can't change because the debts they carry will not allow them to change, only intervention from government can stop them exploiting people the way they do.

  With the OFT completely failing in its inquiry it is imperative that you do as suggested earlier this year and forget the OFT and go to the Competition Commission.

  I fear all of this will come too late to save my wife's business but it is something that needs to be done to stop her fate becoming that of others in the future.

22 October 2009

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