Green Candidate Calls Time on Pub Closures

Keith M Ross, Green Party candidate for Swansea West today spoke out in support of the traditional local pub and regional breweries.

“I’m sure that politicians and activists from all parties finance their local, but we need a commitment to protect traditional pubs from the big business mentality that has seen so many small businesses loose out to supermarkets and out of town developments.

“With five pubs closing every day across the country, we must halt the decline of a great British institution that is often the heart and soul of rural and local areas. Each closure has a devastating effect on local economies, causing job losses and depriving communities of the £80,000 that each pub injects”

CAMRA (The Campaign for Real Ale) has launched a ‘Beer Drinkers and Pub Goers Charter’, which has received widespread support from candidates in the General Election, including Green Party Leader Caroline Lucas.

In line with established Green Party policies on local sustainability that aim to increase local investment and the circulation of local finance – thus encouraging social enterprise and cohesion, Mr. Ross welcomed CAMRA’s efforts to:

· Promote the interests of Britain’s pub goers
· Champion well-run community pubs
· Rebalance alcohol taxation to support beer and pubs
· Reform the beer tie to deliver a fair deal for consumers
· Support the role of well-run pubs as solutions to alcohol misuse

Mr Ross continued, “Community pubs make a vitally important contribution to local sustainability and social cohesion. A good landlord also plays a major role in addressing anti-social behaviour and problematic drinking. After all, whod argue with Al Murray?”

In their Manifesto for the General Election, the Green Party is proposing to amend planning laws to support small businesses, including pubs and local breweries.

They would also encourage local live performance in the arts by moving funding from the regional to the local level and modifying regulations so that small-scale live performance in pubs and similar venues are supported.

The Greens have also pledged to gradually increase alcohol taxes by about 50% by 2013 to match anticipated
increases in expenditure by the NHS in dealing with the effects of binge drinking.

The CAMRA Charter can be found at:

http://www.camra.org.uk/media/attachments/315127/CAMRA-Charter.pdf

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