Pubs will be 'unworkable' under Tier 3, says Holden's Brewery boss

Pubs will be unable to effectively operate under the Government's Tier 3 system, a Black Country brewery's boss has said.

Holden's Brewery, in Woodsetton, Dudley
Holden's Brewery, in Woodsetton, Dudley

Jonathan Holden, managing director of Holden's Brewery, based in Woodsetton, called for the Government to offer more support.

Under the new tiered system, pubs in Tier 3, the strictest level, will have to operate as a takeaway service.

Mr Holden said: "Pubs will have a very difficult time in the new tiered system. Tier 3 is almost unworkable and unviable for our pubs. We have got lots of drinking pubs. We could do a small amount of takeaway.

"There is huge potential to see pubs close. I would be surprised if that didn't happen. [Pubs] have got to evaluate [the circumstances].

More Covid-19 coverage:

"It depends on what level of support comes from Government, both locally and centrally. We will have to find out whether there is extra help or not. But we need something."

Pubs are facing a waiting game to hear what level of restrictions they will face when lockdown ends.

Bobby Basra, who owns the Merridale pub, in Wolverhampton, said some legislation was still "hazy".

He said: "I am thinking we will be in Tier 2/Tier 3.

"Legislation at the moment is still hazy as to what they class as a substantial meal. I know they are extending the hours, which are silly, calling last orders at 10pm but you can leave by 11pm.

"There is a bit of conflicting measures and rules. If they can give us clear guidance, then obviously that gives us an idea of when we relaunch, of when we can reopen, if we can reopen.

He added: "One hundred per cent the Government could offer more support to pubs and the hospitality sector. The run-up to Christmas is the key month. From a business perspective, and a financial support perspective, I think the Government can do a lot more."

Nik Antona, chairman of CAMRA, which has branches in the Black Country and Staffordshire, said: "Publicans across the country will be angry this morning, and they have every right to be.

"Once again, the hospitality sector is being singled out for further restrictions without evidence. This is a kick in the teeth to the vast majority of publicans who have invested money and time into making their premises Covid–secure, and for the consumers that were using pubs to socialise safely."

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News