The code for pub companies with more than 500 sites, introduced today (21 July) after approval by Government, follows those for leased and tenanted pubs in England and Wales for companies with less than 500 tied pubs and for tied pubs in Scotland, published last week.
Its introduction is designed to bring about greater transparency around the tied deals available. Under the code tenants will be able to access a fair rent assessment and the right to move to a free-of-tie tenancy.
The new code for pubs in England and Wales under 500 sites, drawn up by Independent Family Brewers of Britain (IFBB) in conjunction with the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) and other companies representing the sector, removes the need for companies to have their own codes and will give lessees and tenants access to a low-cost dispute resolution.
All codes, which replace Industry Framework Code Six (IFC6) will be overseen by the Pub Governing Body (PGB) with disputes managed through PIRRS (Pub Industry Rent Review Scheme) and PICA-Service which will continue to be administered by the BII.
End of uncertainty and doubt
BII CEO Mike Clist said: “We are pleased that the legislation has now been approved by Government and the period of uncertainty for the industry is now coming to an end. For the BII, it is important that all our members have clarity about their rights and responsibilities under the new code.
“Our role is to help our members and ensure they have a full understanding of the consequences of the new legislation, by providing them with a low fixed cost independent viewpoint. This will enable them to make an informed decision so they can continue to grow their businesses whether that be under their existing tied system or via the new MRO offers available."
ALMR chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “We are happy that the Pubs Code is now in force, bringing an end to a period of uncertainty for the sector. It is important for the sector to push forward and ensure that work with the Adjudicator runs as smoothly as possible and that the Office of the Adjudicator hits the ground running to ensure compliance."
PGB chairman Sir Peter Luff said the new codes showed a commitment that 'self-regulation should continue to more forward in the pub sector'.
"I am very pleased that the three new codes are now in place," he said. "They ensure that the vital work of the PGB to protect tenants and lessees continues, following the introduction of the new statutory regime for larger companies, this week. I am also glad that we have been able to put in place a lengthy transition period for complaints arising under IFC6.
“Companies will make their tenants and lessees aware of these changes. I urge tenants and lessees who believe they have cause for complaint to make use of PIRRS and PICA -Service in the future."