October 23 2014 Latest news:

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 13°C

Five-day forecast

Pubs in Islington could close when new tax comes in, landlord says

Cllr Paul Convery Cllr Paul Convery

Thursday, July 17, 2014
8:00 AM

Pubs in Islington could be forced to close when the council brings in a tax on alcohol sold in the early hours, a landlord has said.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

The late-night levy – which will penalise pubs, clubs and restaurants open past midnight – will be introduced in autumn, and could see charges of as much as £4,440 a year for the largest businesses.

The money will be used to fund private security guards and to clean up the effects of the borough’s rampant nighttime economy.

Last week pub giant JD Wetherspoon announced it would change its opening times to avoid being hit by the levy, which will affect nearly a third of the borough’s 1,300 licensed premises.

Matt Mitchell-Waite – landlord at the New Rose in Essex Road, which is currently open till 2am on Friday and Saturday nights – said he and others would have to consider selling up if they could not afford to open past midnight.

“I’ll weigh it up and if I can’t afford to do it, I’ll have to look at whether it’s worth trading at all. The bulk of the trade is after midnight,” he said.

“Lots of pubs could close, they’re closing left, right and centre as it is. I don’t think anybody realises how much pubs are struggling at the moment.”

Nuisance

The levy is a response to the high level of alcohol-related crime in the borough, which the council said was the cumulative effect of numbers of premises and people.

People living close to the borough’s busiest nighttime areas have welcomed the move.

One resident, a grandmother who lives near Essex Road, said: “There are so many bars and restaurants that are close to where people live. I have my grandchildren over to stay and often they can’t sleep.

“On Saturday and Sunday mornings there are bottles in the street as well as the public nuisance of men peeing in the street.”

Cllr Paul Convery, Islington Council’s executive member for community safety, welcomed the JD Wetherspoon decision, but disputed the levy would cause pubs to close. He said: “I understand why they’re upset about this. It’s a change to their business model, but it will benefit them in the long run.

“If we’ve got pubs that are saying that the only way they can make money is by pouring alcohol into people who are already drunk after midnight, then they need to look at their clientèle.

“The levy is there to hit clubs, places that rely solely on late night drinking and are open to 3am or 4am.”

Share this article

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Forgotten your password?

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Click here to read the Digital Edition of the Islington Gazette on screen
Use our Wedding site to help you plan your big day!
At WeddingSite we know how much you have to organise for your wedding day, that's why we have designed a set of FREE, simple-to-use tools to make the planning process easy & hassle-free. FIND OUT MORE
Find a date using our online dating and friend finder
You can meet new friends, find romance or simply meet up online with people sharing similar interests and hobbies. FIND OUT MORE
Find a local business using our online directory search
Need a plumber? Or a florist? Or anything else? Search our business directory to find Islington businesses in just a few seconds. FIND OUT MORE
Family notices from the Islington Gazette, with readers' tributes
In memoriam, birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, best wishes & special days. FIND OUT MORE

Celebrity / Showbiz See all

Drake has cancelled his Wireless London performance (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for ESPN)

Fans devastated after Drake cancels Wireless London festival

Rapper Drake has pulled out of his headline appearances at this weekend’s Wireless Festival in London, leaving fans devastated.

Read full story »