The BBPA and the ALMR have welcomed the decision last night, by the Licensing Committee of the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames in Greater London, to reject launching a consultation on the introduction of a Late Night Levy in the borough.
BBPA Chief Executive Brigid Simmonds (pictured) commented, 'I welcome Kingston’s decision not to move towards a Late Night Levy. This is the second time this approach has been rejected by the council, which has recognised that with fewer licensed venues, there would be even less potential revenue from a levy, which acts as an additional, unwelcome tax on vital local businesses.
“Pubs in London, in particular, are struggling with sky-high increases in business rates, and high duty on beer.
“Further developing a partnership approach, with the police, local authorities and business, working closely together to tackle any issues in the local night-time economy, is definitely the best way forward.”
Kate Nicholls, CEO of the ALMR, also commented, “Kingston Council has acted with pragmatism and common sense by dismissing a possible late-night levy in the area. It is a measure that would have only increased burdens on hard-pressed businesses and led to further closures without having an appreciable effect on any perceived areas of alcohol-related disorder.
'Other councils considering the measure would do well to follow Kingston’s example and avoid introducing a discredited measure that harms businesses.”