The latest pub closure figures from CAMRA reveal that 16 Scottish pubs have closed their doors over the last six months.
It is now prompting the real ale consumer’s champion to renew calls for government action to Save Our Pubs.
CAMRA is increasingly concerned that Scotland has no protection in place for pub tenants tied to large pub owning companies, which means that many face very high rents, as well as being forced to by their beer from their pub company at higher prices than on the open market.
CAMRA is calling on the Scottish Government to back the campaign to introduce a Pubs Code in Scotland, giving tied tenants a fairer deal to help stem pub closures.
CAMRA is also concerned that pub closure figures across the UK remain high at 14 a week, and is calling for a preferential rate of tax on beer sold in pubs to better support the on trade and for the Scottish Government to change the planning system so that planning permission is always required before a pub can be demolished.
Sarah Crawford CAMRA regional director for Scotland and Northern Ireland said: ‘Well run pubs are at the heart of community life in Scotland and are vital in combating loneliness and social isolation, but we are still seeing far too many pubs closing across the country.
‘Many pubs in Scotland are struggling because pub companies take more than is fair from licensees’ profits by forcing them to buy beer directly from them at an inflated price, as well as paying sky-high rents. As a result, many landlords struggle to make a living and pubs in Scotland continue to close.
‘That’s why we are calling on the Government to back the Pubs Code Bill introduced to the Scottish Parliament by Neil Bibby MSP to introduce a powerful pubs code to ensure tied tenants are treated fairly by pub companies.’