Monthly Archives: June 2011

Barrel-Dregs, why do the Self Employed have no fair representation (186)

Self Employment and the failure of Government to support them.

I had worked for the BII as a membership consultant for thirteen years and recruited many thousands of members, then a couple of years ago I was accused of having had two failed businesses and being an inappropriate person to represent the BII recruiting members, by the Director of Membership following a complaint from the Chairman of the Devon and Cornwall Region, also a Director of the BII.

I have never had a failed business fortunately, and have been running the same small business for the last twenty five years, rescuing failed catering and licensed businesses, when a suitable opportunity appeared, in addition to recruiting membership for the BII, unfortunately a labour of love in the thought that I was helping people in the industry, rather than financial viability in recent years.

This issue has been raised before by myself and others, without repeating all the details again in depth.

I was immediately relieved of my position in Devon where I lived, naively I had assumed that some sort of investigation would take place and clear my name, not on your life.

The GMB offered to take it up and did nothing.

The FSB are good on high profile talking and would appear to be very selective about actions of abuse from my sources, they do not take the sort of actions that ACAS does.

The woman that had made the complaint to the Devon & Cornwall Chairman didn’t know me from Adam when I talked to her, said it was someone else, in fact, said it was another membership consultant,  who had been involved with the Chairman in a Punch Lease and lost an eye watering amount of money between them in a very short time, they didn’t read the small print or was it business incompetence? The Chairman claimed after a few beers to have got a very favourable valuation for his Fixtures and Fittings from Punch, which seemed very generous on their part at the time kniowing Punch.

I digress, with this scenario I assumed the good old BII would do the right thing, investigate and clear my name, no chance.

Bearing in mind that the allegations were totally false, there was absolutely no body to turn to the GMB were worse than useless in spite of their talk, all it needed was a letter threatening exposure of the BII failure to take action, again nothing.

I phoned ACAS for advice, because I was Self Employed, they would not even discuss it, the only recourse was taking the BII to court, initial estimates started at £50K, far beyond my pocket to justify clearing my name.

This effectively means that there is no body to represent the Self Employed or even investigate any abuse of the this segment of the working population, who are the main stay of small businesses.

The most idle person can take a job or fail to get a job, yet has redress via ACAS for some imagined slight, costing thousands of pounds, costing the company involved possibly double that which is paid out, in some cases crippling the company.

Yet the Self Employed, who represent the backbone of the serious working population have no redress without taking court action.

I am heartily sick of talking to honest, hard working people who are being exploited by unscrupulous landlords in the pub industry and several other industries with no forceful source of advice or redress where applicable.

It could very easily come within ACAS’s brief.

In my case, I was fortunate enough to raise the issue through a number of outlets and an investigation was convened, I was totally cleared and the recommendation was that the BII paid me compensation for loss of earnings and damage to my reputation, which they completely ignored, they removed the Membership Director with a decent hand shake, if I had been employed by the BII the situation would have been totally different.

This failure to act positively by the BII does raise questions as to how effective they are protecting members issues in these troubled times, I have been a member far longer than a consultant for them, which counted for nothing.

I had spent thirteen years recruiting and received nothing apart from a damaged reputation, the removed director a fraction of that time.

This failure by successive Governments to provide a secure body of advice and action for the real working people behind small businesses in the country is a serious error.

ACAS could well encompass this role and bring a level of equality to the one growth area that country needs to get out of the recession.

If you agree with my thoughts please send a copy of this article to the Prime Minister and your local MP, in addition anyone else that may benefit.

Barfly

Note.

I sent some copies of the idea to colleagues for their thoughts, with some interesting responses, if you agree please email us your comments at info@buyingapub.com.

Blood Clots/Stroke – They Now Have a Fourth Indicator

 

Blood Clots/Stroke – They Now Have a Fourth Indicator, the Tongue.

I  will continue to forward this every time it  comes around!

STROKE: Remember  the 1st Three Letters…. S. T. R.

STROKE IDENTIFICATION:

During a BBQ, a woman stumbled and took a little fall – she assured everyone that she was fine (they offered to call  paramedics) .She said she had just tripped over a brick because of her new shoes.

They got her cleaned up and got her a new plate of  food. While she appeared a bit shaken up, Jane went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening.

Jane’s husband called later  telling everyone that his wife had been taken to  the hospital – (at 6:00  pm  Jane passed away.) She had suffered a stroke at the BBQ. Had they known how to identify the  signs of a stroke, perhaps Jane would be with  us today. Some don’t die… They end up in a  helpless, hopeless condition instead.

It only takes a minute to read this…

A neurologist says that if he can get to a stroke victim within 3 hours he can totally reverse the  effects of a stroke…totally. He said  the trick was getting a stroke recognized,  diagnosed, and then getting the patient  medically cared for within 3 hours, which is  tough.

RECOGNIZING A STROKE
Thank God for the sense to remember the ‘3’ steps, STR . Read and Learn!

Sometimes symptoms of a  stroke are difficult to identify.

Unfortunately,  the lack of awareness spells disaster. The  stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage  when people nearby fail to recognize the  symptoms of a stroke.

 

Now doctors say a  bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three  simple questions:

S *Ask  the individual to SMILE.

T *Ask  the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE  (Coherently)

(i.e. It is sunny out  today.)

R *Ask  him or her to RAISE BOTH  ARMS.

If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these  tasks, call emergency number immediately and describe the symptoms to the  dispatcher.

 

New Sign  of a Stroke ——– Stick out Your  Tongue

NOTE:
Another  ‘sign’ of a stroke is this: Ask the  person to ‘stick’ out his tongue…

If the tongue  is ‘crooked’, if it goes to one side or the  other,   that is  also an indication of a stroke.

 

A  cardiologist  says if everyone who gets this  e-mail sends it to 10 people; you can bet  that  at least one life will be saved.

Barrel-Dregs, how to screw a good tenant by a Pubco (185)

 

Pubco/Tenant Meltdown

 

A True Story of Pubco incompetence, be warned.

In the summer of 2002 we agreed a 10 year deal with Unique pubco, which after a short while extended to a 30 year voyager lease in view of the positive business relationship, within a short period of time we decided to invest a substantial amount into developing the business further, using family savings and business bank loans thus committing to long term trading at the premises.

After increasing the barrelage considerably our BRM/RM tenant relationship continued in a positive fashion………That is until a bombshell!! Our RM informed us that he would be leaving as he could not agree with the policies of the new company who had just taken over Unique pubco he then introduced us to his replacement, just as we were becoming acquainted she then informed us that she would be leaving and introduced us to her replacement
who after a short while took sick leave with a nervous breakdown !!  In between this our new landlords informed us Brulines were coming to install their monitoring equipment, so after our short few year honeymoon period the real face of pubco tenant relationship exposed itself.

We then had a new senior regional area manager who was a much use as ………..anyway let’s move on, after agreeing to a full cellar refit we advised Brulines to hold back for a couple of weeks as we were having a full refit, in their wisdom they chose to ignore this advice needless to say that they immediately turned up at the premises unannounced demanding access to the cellar, on doing so they were quite rude and arrogant whilst accusing us of sabotaging their equipment regardless of the fact that it was quite obvious the cellar techs had cheerily snipped away at all their monitoring equipment and
dumped into a corner of the cellar.

For around four months after the new “upgraded”  Brulines installation we received several unpleasant visits from Brulines engineers and enforcers who  used extremely sarcastic and accusatory attitudes to continually accuse us of tampering with theirm equipment, looking back it would appear that this was the beginning of the end of our “business partnership” with our new pubco landlords, we had no choice but to defend ourselves from the unpleasant accusations thrown at us, during the previous few years there had never been any question of wrong doings until this time.

After witnessing the demoralizing effect the visits were having on staff and family I undertook a thorough assessment of the premises and what could be causing the discrepancies to warrant their aggressive and arrogant behaviour towards us………Bingo !!!! I found the cause in their installation mistakes the Brulines monitoring system had been wired up to an old metered pump circuit which meant after turning lights of at night it switched off their system.  We had been verbally abused and frequently accused of buying out and also tampering with their system because Brulines had not researched the property, had they done so it would have been obvious that the accusations of blocking their system most weekends and bank holidays was self explanatory due to the Industrial estate location of the premises and their installation mistakes.

Our new area manager took extended sick leave then left leaving us with a new female RM who also moved on returning us back to the senior regional manager, who persuaded us to open a neighbouring premises on am TAW, a long and complicated episode but one that almost resulted in my death due to an incident relating to faulty electrics “after their inspection” several emails at HQ in the midlands on file for this we eventually handed the keys back for this one without issues or compensatory penalties. This building has since been sold along with almost all our neighbouring pubs. The new owners are frequently offering a FOT deal without building responsibilities which we are seriously considering as we can redirect all the majority of existing customers to this.

Eventually we are introduced to yet another area manager who turned out to be quite resourceful and helpful even to the point that he recognised that we were the only pub left on his books for that area and would be recommending it for disposal, also that we should register our interest in the building, great news we thought !!!!!!
Almost immediately after that we received several visits from Brulines resulting in a fine which was taken from our account regardless of our evidence and protests, for the first time during our tenancy we came unstuck due to seven coaches turning up unexpectedly, because of this we  emptied our cellar of stock and called in favours of people we had lent to in the past, we received our previous stock back plus more, something that had gone on from day one with the knowledge of our BDM except on this occasion the amount was more, we eventually balanced it out, unfortunately Brulines refused to accept this and treated it as a breach of the agreement, we sent emails and letters denying their findings and refused permission to access our account, needless to say they did so anyway, the premises has since fallen away and is only trading to survive, the property has now been de listed for disposal and without an active retail partnership and with dis incentivized tenants it has simply stagnated.

The area manager sympathised with our situation and only for his honesty and straight forward talking he convinced us to work with him, another premises had closed down and he asked us to consider it, as a proof of trust he offered the keys to the premises which we had for a week, during this time we had complete access to the premises without restrictions, after a series of discussions and promise of ongoing support we eventually decided to reopen it on TAW.

Almost immediately this RM was transferred to another area leaving us without a dedicated area manager with which to continue our business discussions, after a short while we were eventually introduced to our new RM who instantly took sick leave with a nervous breakdown leaving us with yet another temporary RM, our new RM resigned under suspicious circumstances with our Divisional Director shortly to follow. The premises is in serious need of decoration, has crumbling and dangerous stairs to the cellar,  faulty electrics, leaking roof, broken drainage and faulty ventilation in the gents basement toilets, customers regularly complain or abuse staff.

We end up with a temporary area manager who informs us the main focus of his job is in estates disposals, this does not bode well for any retail partnership, the discussions breakdown and he becomes evasive and restrictive even refusing us permission to redecorate, we then get a new Divisional Director ex JD Wetherspoons and eventually another new RM ex Marstons who also instantly recognises our other premises as a recommendation for disposal, he was experienced and resourceful and knew the area from his Marston days, unfortunately he too moved on, leaving us back to the temporary stand in RM from estates disposals ex Punch. Eventually frustrations take over and we request a meeting to discuss future and past issues, during this meeting it is revealed that the stand in disposals RM actually intervened to put a stop on any progress six months previously, so in effect we had been subsidising their building with our savings as unpaid caretakers whilst being restricted from full trading opportunities. This was a severe body blow and needless to say, emotions took over and we let him know our feelings of disgust that we had been manipulated in this way.

Within a few weeks the new Divisional Director set up another meeting during which he informed us that he had decided we would be given the opportunity to go back to the original deal offered the previous year on a five year non assignable tenancy, we agreed to consider this subject to appropriate compensatory measures for the lost opportunities as unpaid caretakers.

For the next few weeks we experienced several unannounced Bruline visits to calibrate their equipment at both premises, the engineers both commented on our cleaning methods of using keg bottles direct as opposed to the cleaning cups on the ring main, a system we have always had in place, at both pubco premises the Brulines engineer contacted their HQ indicating that there would be huge variances in their “findings” due to the continued use of individual keg bottles at the premises. One even told us that he he’d been instructed to find evidence of tampering, he informed HQ there was no evidence of tampering and he signed the premises off as such then upgraded the premises to a Brulines phase tamperproof 2 his final act was to re calibrate the flow meters, on doing so this revealed a massive increase in the number of pulses being used to measure volume through flow meters since the last calibration which also would create unreliable readings. This resulted in a surprise visit from our stand in manager and the original Brulines officer who accused us of tampering with the original equipment some years ago for which we are still awaiting an apology and thanks for finding the fault in their installation which lead to the accusations.

On this occasion I allowed full unsupervised access whilst I made our feelings known to the RM responsible for the breakdown in business discussions, his only interest was in administering a Brulines fine, they both left the premises laughing ! several weeks later they both arrived unannounced again so on this occasion it became very hostile so we contacted a business advisor who was nearby and is an ex brewery chairman. The RM became agitated and fidgety, constantly shouting and demanding glasses of water, the Brulines officer again inspected the cellar and again could find nothing, this time he was observed and his actions, or lack of, indicated he was only on the premises to issue a fine in his possession, once back in the bar area he too was becoming hostile and agitated whilst waiting for our business advisor.

Almost every product was scrutinised and a look  of disappointment pointed at our RM each time he could find no evidence, our business advisor was disgusted at the hostility shown towards us knowing how we had been treated so badly for so long, some members my family were in attendance including my wife who had pressures of her own to deal with and lost her brother the following day, my daughter and grandchildren, finally both the Brulines officer and the RM left and we were all flabbergasted at what had just happened and the manner in which it had. it was a hostile and intimidating experience for everyone, one can only imagine how some tenants would crumble under such intimidating tactics if they were subjected to a similar experience but without witnesses to protect them.

This is a premises that has a history of failed tenants due to excessive overheads, the previous tenant left evidence of letters to their RM pleading for assistance finally resulting in a long drawn out legal battle they ended up giving in and stopped paying any rates, utilities, VAT, rent, etc there is reference to tens of thousands of pounds in Brulines fines and several references involving Gosschalks and court cases for buying out plus re possession proceedings, the premises has stagnated for a considerable time without providing any revenue to the pubco it beggars belief that the current RM has only further contributed to this and has yet to offer one positive to support a retail partnership.
The premises in comparison to neighbouring outlets of the same pubco has, according to the business pub fact information document, has identical trading volumes over the previous six years and has been the lowest volume during current trading yet the rates valuations at them VOA is more than double placing considerable strain on finances, tie release fees offered is also more than double that offered to neighbouring outlets. By comparison we pay over £2000/month for rent and F&F TAW rental plus £1645/month rates yet similar premises nearby are offered £4/month rent and nil £ F&F rental plus.

P.Doff.

The views expressed are not necessarily the editors and www.buyingapub.com accepts noresponsibility for them, we do try to avoid offensive or litigious statements being made. They are written by concerned professionals in the industry who feel that these issues should be raised to ensure that all licensees are made fully aware of many hidden pitfalls.

 

Barrel-Dregs, is the Man who knows all the answers ducking out? (184)

 

BISC FINAL EVIDENCE

Pot Boy South East has been hobnobbing in the extensive corridors of power these last few days, fingering
the drapes and generally supping cheap beer in the Strangers Bar of our mother of all Parliaments. The mission not impossible was to make  headway into the quality of evidence that is expected in the final, final hearings into the good ship Pubco. As followers of Barrel Dregs will well remember, the Pubcos have been given until the middle of this year, ergo NOW, to put their house in order. Have they in real terms ? Not a cats chance in hell !!

Now one of the biggest abusers of the entire system beyond a shadow of doubt is Enterprise Inns. Well little munchkins, our young Arthur at the palace of the BII has been readily accrediting wonderful Codes of Practice to all and sundry from BBPA members, the BII’s paymasters for training , PIRRS and so much more.  All, so far so good. However the industry guru, our beloved Oval Man, has let it slip over more than a few beers to a couple of mates down under, that over 40% of ALL complaints of breaches of Codes of Practice, yes you are now well ahead of me, are laid at the door of Enterprise Inns. What has young Arthur, bless ‘im, done about it. A big fat gasping NOTHING. DA NADA, ZILCH. Oh deary me, is he so scared of his own executive shadow that not a dicky bird even reaches the trade press. Apparently not. Have Enterprise been sanctioned for the many reported breaches or their much lauded accreditation been removed. Er, no, still a work in progress whatever that means.(Ed, it means they have got away with it !)

Now the MPs that are the members of the Committee are not dim at all. They know when the system is being taken for a comprehensive ride. So the main man they want to quiz is not Ted Tuppen, as recently or even Simon Townsend. Both can and did answer in wonderful sweeping generalities. No,the guy they really want to get to grips with is the Prince of Pubco darkness, Rob May.

He’s the guy who was the head of the Trade Related Valuation Group of the RICS, when he chose not to ‘fess up to being even employed by Enterprise as their National Rent Controller when he chaired the group. He weasled away under the title of “Pub Expert” and the RICS let him get away with the deception, to their everlasting shame. He’s the one to answer the questions as to why Enterprise are so consistently abusing their own Code of Practice especially when it comes round to the biggest expense of them all after wages….rent.

Imagine PB’s shock when I was slipped the wink today in said Strangers Bar by a man truly in then know, that it is rumoured that ROB MAY is making an excuse to not be giving the evidence that is requested of him due to a “prior engagement” possibly Wimbledon Centre Court ??? Well PB could be flattened by a dead dingo’s donger at that.
Rob May cannot in truth be locked up or even fined for such blatant contempt, that is if the rumour today is true, but letting him off the hook is like letting the fox out of the henhouse after a night’s worth of gratuitous feeding. Get a grip those in control, put off the session which should have had Rob May in attendance and reconvene at a time when there is no “prior” to stop the evidence being given. Now is not the time to go wobbly and in Wimbledon parlance. YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS !! You will all look daft if he twists you round his little finger just like he did with the RICS.

Back to the Strangers Bar. Great cask conditioned beer that really is staggeringly cheap. Long live the Sergeant at Arms !

Pot Boy South
East.

The views expressed are not necessarily the editors and www.buyingapub.com accepts noresponsibility for them, we do try to avoid offensive or litigious statements being made. They are written by concerned professionals in the industry who feel that these issues should be raised to ensure that all licensees are made fully aware of many hidden pitfalls.

 

 

Poppleston Allen, Owners Liability, and Pop Up Restaurants

  • Date: 17/06/2011
  • Author/Solicitor: Jeremy Allen

 


An interesting case has been decided involving a public house owned and operated by JD Wetherspoons Plc.

Wetherspoons had obtained listed building consent from the Local Authority to refurbish some premises into a large public house. A problem arose over a large open staircase. This had banisters each side which were below the minimum height allowed under building regulations. English Heritage did not want any changes to be made to the staircase and the requirement to raise its height was subsequently waived by the Local Authority.

The claimant visited the pub for a drink with colleagues and during the course of the evening talked about sliding down the banister. On her way out, she attempted to slide down but fell backwards and landed on the marble floor, which was approximately 4 metres below her. Unsurprisingly, she sustained a spinal fracture.

At the hearing, she accepted the obvious risk of falling but stated that she was behaving rationally and had chosen to take the risk. She was clearly attempting to show that, whilst her conduct might have contributed to the accident, thereby reducing the level of damages, some blame must be accepted by Wetherspoons.

For once, I am pleased to say, the Court disagreed. They took the view that she had clearly accepted the obvious risk inherent in sliding down the banisters. It was such an obvious risk that Wetherspoons could not owe her a duty to protect her. It is clearly sad that somebody takes such a risk. It must however be right that the operator of the premises, in these circumstances, should not be liable as a result.

For more information please contact Jeremy Allen .

 


The propensity towards pop up restaurants is increasing. They are used at festivals and can also be used at other significant outdoor events where large turn outs are expected. They involve essentially the use of a temporary structure for a relatively short space of time offering the usual range of food and beverages that one would expect from a normal restaurant.

The simple fact is, however, that whilst they may be temporary in nature they will nonetheless be regulated by the very same regimes which apply to normal restaurants. The main ones can be summarised as follows:

1. Licensing – the sale of alcohol particularly but also the sale of hot food between 11pm and 5am or indeed any form of regulated entertainment (ignoring background music) will require licensing from the Local Authority. This would probably be in the form of a Temporary Event Notice with a Council fee of £21 for the privilege. 10 clear working days notice must obviously been given of such an application to make sure that the ability to carry out licensable activities is achieved.

The general licensing laws will also apply. This means strict adherence to rules on selling alcohol to underage persons to people who have had too much to drink and to compliance with terms of the permission. Penalties for breach can be high and run into thousands of pounds in terms of fines in the Magistrates Court. This means that properly trained staff must be used so that if something does go wrong a due diligence defence is at least a possibility.

2. Health & Safety – the usual rules will apply in terms of the carrying out of risk assessments and again the training of staff to make sure that they are not endangering themselves in the use of hot and potentially dangerous kitchen equipment, is the most obvious example. Again breach of the legislation can lead to very high fines in the Magistrates Court and indeed the Crown Court.

3. Food Safety – a system of hazard analysis will have to be in place in the same way as it would in a restaurant. This will identify the stages during the delivery, storage, cooking and service processes which carry risks associated with customers health. These must be identified and minimised. Staff again will have to be trained in this regard because penalties can once again be very high.

All of this means that the overheads for a fairly short period of time will be very high. The cost of compliance cannot be spread over a long period of time as they would with a normal restaurant. For this reason, these sorts of temporary structures are normally used for marketing purposes rather than as a serious method of generating profit.

As with all aspects of licensing law and regulatory compliance, we are able to advise and assist.

For more information please contact Graeme Cushion

Barrel Dregs, a supposedly true story by an elderly lady genius (182)

 

A Spectacular Senior Moment

Banking Incompetence

This is sheer genius and
should go round the work place, it is no mock up, it was printed in the THE
TIMES – – Letter of the Year:

A SENIOR MOMENT – (I PRAY TO GOD THAT I HAVE THEM LIKE THIS……) An elderly lady actually wrote
this letter to her bank. The bank manager
thought it amusing
enough to have it published in The Times and this
newspaper thanks him most sincerely..

Dear Sir,

I am writing to thank you for bouncing my cheque with which I endeavoured to pay my plumber last month. By my calculations, three
‘nanoseconds’ must
have elapsed between his presenting the cheque
and the arrival in my
account of the funds needed to honour it. I
refer, of course, to the
automatic monthly deposit of my Pension, an
arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for only eight years. You are to
be commended for
seizing that brief window of opportunity, and
also for debiting my account
£30 by way of penalty
for the inconvenience caused to your bank.

My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this incident has caused me to rethink my errant financial ways.

I noticed that whereas I personally attend to your telephone calls and letters, when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the
impersonal,
overcharging, re-recorded, faceless entity which
your bank has become.
From now on I, like you, choose only to deal
with a flesh-and-blood
person. My mortgage and loan payments will
therefore and hereafter no
longer be automatic, but
will arrive at your bank by cheque, addressed
personally and confidentially to an employee at your bank whom you
must nominate..

Be aware that it is an offence under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an envelope.

Please find attached an Application Contact Status which I require your chosen employee to complete. I am sorry it runs to eight pages,
but in
order that I know as much about him or her as
your bank knows about me,
there is no alternative. Please note that all
copies of his or her medical
history must be
countersigned by a Solicitor, and the mandatory details of
his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and
liabilities) must
be accompanied by documented proof..

In due course, I will issue your employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with me. I regret that it cannot be shorter
than 28
digits but, again, I have modelled it on the
number of button presses
required of me to access my account balance on
your phone bank service. As
they say, imitation is
the sincerest form of flattery.

Let me level the playing field even further. When you call me, press buttons as follows:

1– To make an appointment to see me.

required. A password will be 2– To query a missing payment.

3– To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.

4– To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping.

5– To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to nature.

6– To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home.

7– To leave a message on my computer (a password to access my computer is communicated to you at a later date to the Authorized Contact.)

8– To return to the
main menu and to listen to
options 1 through 8

9– To make a general
complaint or inquiry, the
contact will then be put
on hold,
pending the attention of my automated answering service.  While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait, uplifting music will play for the duration of the call.

Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new arrangement.

May I wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less prosperous, New Year.

Your Humble Client

Addendum from The Editor:

IMPORTANT to REMEMBER that this letter was written by a 98 year old woman;

DOESN’T SHE MAKE YOU
PROUD!!!?

www.ulh.nhs.uk

BII News update

Enews: June 2011

Follow on twitter

Welcome to the June issue of BII
Enews

Raising the Bar Events – improving
the industry of tomorrow

BII are
currently organising a new set of exciting events due to take place in
October 2011. Designed to provide practical advice and guidance to people who
are entering the trade. Click here for
more information

Enews: June 2011: | 14 June 2011 Trouble viewing this email?   Click here
to view it online
 

Enews: June 2011

Follow on twitter

Welcome to the June issue of BII
Enews

 

Raising the Bar Events – improving
the industry of tomorrow

BII are
currently organising a new set of exciting events due to take place in
October 2011. Designed to provide practical advice and guidance to people who
are entering the trade. Click here for
more information

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News

BII
Chief Executive Retains his Position as Second Most Influential Person in the
Pub Trade

Neil Robertson has once again been
voted second in the Publican Morning Advertiser Most Influential People in
the Pub Industry List

BII
to Offer Mentoring Service

BII are pleased to announce the launch
of a new member service, designed to offer extra support to members at all
levels as they navigate the complexities of this challenging industry.

GoSkills
and People 1st Merger Plans – Call for Employer Views

People 1st and GoSkills are
inviting employers from the pubs, bars and nightclubs industry to give their
views and support to their proposed merger.

BII
supports Bacardi’s Responsible Retailing Server Training

Neil Robertson, BII’s CEO
announced at the Annual Lunch at the Grosvenor House Hotel, BII’s support for
the launch of a new staff training initiative from Bacardi Brown Forman
Brands (BBFB), and in association with the Wine and Spirit Education Trust
(WSET).

Hospitality
Boost As Job Postings and Applications Soar

The hospitality industry is providing
some cheer to the UK’s economy as job postings and applications continued to
soar in the past year, according to a new report from Caterer.com and People
1st.

Nearly
3,000 qualified staff for pubs and small licensed shops by 2012 thanks to the
SABMiller Scholarship Programme through BIIAB

Following two successful years of
the SABMiller Scholarship programme, in partnership with BIIAB, nearly 3,000
staff working in pubs and small licensed shops in the UK will be qualified in
Responsible Alcohol Retailing by 2012.

Nationwide
Energy Joins BII as Corporate Members

BII is delighted to announce that
Nationwide Energy has become a corporate member of BII

BII
Training For Business Development Managers Now Launched

The long-awaited BII training
programme for Business Development Managers working in the leased and
tenanted sector of licensed hospitality is launched today and specially
brokered courses will be available to companies from 1st August. This service
is being provided for companies who do not wish to run the training
themselves although bigger companies have been piloting the modules for some
time.

Family
Businesses wanted for a new BBC 2 TV programme!

Do you run a family business and
work with members of your family? Are you facing any challenges or dilemmas
connected to your business and family? Are you worried about the future of
your company? Finding it hard in the current economic conditions?

PAYEpeople
join BII as corporate members

BII is delighted to announce that
PAYEpeople has become a corporate member of BII.

2011
BII Licensee Of The Year Unveiled – Darran Lingley is Britain’s Top Licensee!

Darran Lingley MBII of the Five
Bells, Colne Engaine, Essex was crowned 2011 Licensee of the Year at the BII
Annual Lunch held in London on Tuesday.

Events

BIIAB
Level 3 Award in Managing the Night Time Economy

This new and exciting
qualification is a direct result of research undertaken by the Civic Trust,
which identified a national need for motivation and training for
practitioners and policy makers in developing and managing the night-time
economy. The research has also culminated in the Purple Flag Accreditation
Scheme, now run by the Association of Town Centre Management, and this trail-blazing
qualification will greatly benefit applicants for the scheme.

Start date:
04 July 2011
Finish date:
07 July 2011
Venue date:
Haley’s Hotel & Restaurant, Shire Oak Road, Headingley, Leeds LS6
2DE

Pub
Values Now and in the Future

THE BRIEFING for all those
involved in the licensed property sector. With detailed fact-backed
information and evidence-based guidance. Chaired by Neil Robertson, chief
executive,BII and in association with the ALMR

Start date:
13 July 2011
Finish date:
13 July 2011
Venue date:
Mayfair Conference Centre, London, W2

 

If you would like to find out more about joining BII, or
receiving this e-news direct,  visit www.bii.org, or email join@bii.org – quoting reference NW2011

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News

BII
Chief Executive Retains his Position as Second Most Influential Person in the
Pub Trade

Neil Robertson has once again been
voted second in the Publican Morning Advertiser Most Influential People in
the Pub Industry List

BII
to Offer Mentoring Service

BII are pleased to announce the
launch of a new member service, designed to offer extra support to members at
all levels as they navigate the complexities of this challenging industry.

GoSkills
and People 1st Merger Plans – Call for Employer Views

People 1st and GoSkills are
inviting employers from the pubs, bars and nightclubs industry to give their
views and support to their proposed merger.

BII
supports Bacardi’s Responsible Retailing Server Training

Neil Robertson, BII’s CEO
announced at the Annual Lunch at the Grosvenor House Hotel, BII’s support for
the launch of a new staff training initiative from Bacardi Brown Forman
Brands (BBFB), and in association with the Wine and Spirit Education Trust
(WSET).

Hospitality
Boost As Job Postings and Applications Soar

The hospitality industry is
providing some cheer to the UK’s economy as job postings and applications
continued to soar in the past year, according to a new report from
Caterer.com and People 1st.

Nearly
3,000 qualified staff for pubs and small licensed shops by 2012 thanks to the
SABMiller Scholarship Programme through BIIAB

Following two successful years of
the SABMiller Scholarship programme, in partnership with BIIAB, nearly 3,000
staff working in pubs and small licensed shops in the UK will be qualified in
Responsible Alcohol Retailing by 2012.

Nationwide
Energy Joins BII as Corporate Members

BII is delighted to announce that
Nationwide Energy has become a corporate member of BII

BII
Training For Business Development Managers Now Launched

The long-awaited BII training
programme for Business Development Managers working in the leased and
tenanted sector of licensed hospitality is launched today and specially
brokered courses will be available to companies from 1st August. This service
is being provided for companies who do not wish to run the training
themselves although bigger companies have been piloting the modules for some
time.

Family
Businesses wanted for a new BBC 2 TV programme!

Do you run a family business and
work with members of your family? Are you facing any challenges or dilemmas
connected to your business and family? Are you worried about the future of
your company? Finding it hard in the current economic conditions?

PAYEpeople
join BII as corporate members

BII is delighted to announce that
PAYEpeople has become a corporate member of BII.

2011
BII Licensee Of The Year Unveiled – Darran Lingley is Britain’s Top Licensee!

Darran Lingley MBII of the Five
Bells, Colne Engaine, Essex was crowned 2011 Licensee of the Year at the BII
Annual Lunch held in London on Tuesday.

Events

BIIAB
Level 3 Award in Managing the Night Time Economy

This new and exciting
qualification is a direct result of research undertaken by the Civic Trust,
which identified a national need for motivation and training for
practitioners and policy makers in developing and managing the night-time
economy. The research has also culminated in the Purple Flag Accreditation
Scheme, now run by the Association of Town Centre Management, and this
trail-blazing qualification will greatly benefit applicants for the scheme.

Start date:
04 July 2011
Finish date:
07 July 2011
Venue date:
Haley’s Hotel & Restaurant, Shire Oak Road, Headingley, Leeds LS6
2DE

Pub
Values Now and in the Future

THE BRIEFING for all those
involved in the licensed property sector. With detailed fact-backed
information and evidence-based guidance.. Chaired by Neil Robertson, chief
executive,BII and in association with the ALMR

Start date:
13 July 2011
Finish date:
13 July 2011
Venue date:
Mayfair Conference Centre, London, W2
Remember to visit your local BIIAB
region to find out more about events and initiatives near you

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Freedom2Choose, Monthly News Letter

Smoking Issues from around the World and the UK

 



Chairman’s Message
We have great news folks, for the 29th June sees me leading a deputation of dedicated f2c members to a very important function in the Terrace Pavillion of the House of Commons.

Arranged by the Save Our Pubs And Clubs (SOPAC,) campaign and hosted by Greg Knight (Con), Roger Godsiff (Lab) and John Hemming (Lib Dem), this is a wonderful opportunity for all readers to write to their MPs, inviting them to attend. It is also a chance for your local licensees to let their views be known.

Support for the relaxing of the Smoking Ban is growing and this is a wonderful opportunity for you to make your voice heard.

Get writing folks!


Pubs
Ted Tuppen, CEO of Enterprise Inns, remains optimistic about his pubco’s future. Return to ‘normality’ will involve the sale of up to 500 pubs before September, a task not made any easier by an oversupply to the market.

While pubs in the south of England are beginning to show signs of recovery, theharrying of the north continues.  The Federation of Small Businesses is warning that, at current projections, the Fylde Coast area around Blackpool could be ‘dry’ within five years, with all the blame being pinned on the pubco business model.

News from the Front
The Scotsman warns its readers that scary-sounding isocyanic acid, a by-product of all combustion, “could be contributing to health problems such as cataracts, arthritis and heart disease.”

A name familiar to readers of this newsletter will be that of Linda Bauld, Professor of Socio-Management at Stirling University. This Orwellian-sounding position allows her to indulge her interest in smoking behaviour, while her position at ASH UK ensures a willing outlet for her findings. The discovery that regular smokers ignore health warnings comes just as demands for plain packaging gather momentum.

A study from Minnesota University purports to show that passive smoking boosts blood pressure – but only for boys. This is not the only anomaly to have scientists scratching their heads. There are now 25 million asthma sufferers in the USA, a rise of 5 million in the last ten years, “despite a drop in … second-hand smoke and general smoking.”

Wales takes third-hand smoking to its heart.

So too has Smokefree South West.   Their video, The Toxic Truth stars ordinary members of the public who take turns to express their horror upon first learning of third-hand smoke. Warning – will raise blood pressure, regardless of gender!

While the residents of Plymouth are being asked to step outside to smoke, those ofNorthern Ireland are debating whether to follow New York’s example and herd smokers back inside again.

Champix again
The Champix scandal just keeps on rolling along.  It seems that Pfizer has been less than open about the extent of severe side-effects associated with its stop-smoking drug.

Pfizer’s reluctance to register extreme adverse reactions with the FDA may help to explain the dismissive response of anti-smoking activists to early reports – for example, the outrageously inaccurate statement from ASH Scotland’s Ailsa Rutter that smokers are unhealthy anyway. Of current concern, however, is the deafening silence from UK Public Health bodies.  NICE approval of Champix as an NHS prescription drug still stands. It has been on the MHRA’s Black Triangle List since its approval by the EU in 2006; the MHRA’s last update was in November 2008.

FDA       Food and Drug Administration (USA)
NICE      National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (UK)
MHRA    Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (UK)

STOP PRESS:- Champix removed from French list of approved drugs.

 

Foreign News
A busy month for anti-smoking activists in the Middle East.

May 31st saw the voluntary boycotting of tobacco sales by many supermarkets, petrol stations and night-spots across Dubai, (UAE) in honour of World No Tobacco Day.

Down the road, in Abu Dhabi, health lobbyists marked the occasion by complaining about the government’s tardiness in implementing an Emirates-wide ban, passed in January 2009.

Jordanian health officials are facing similar government heel-dragging over the enforcement of their two-year-old law against public smoking, which they say is being widely ignored.

And, as if the citizens of Iraq haven’t got enough on their plate, the Iraqi government launches its third attempt to ban smoking in public places.

Meanwhile, the Independent speculates that Bin Laden may have had a ‘no smoking’ rule at his Pakistani hide-out.

 

 

Elsewhere, China finally gets round to honouring its FCTC commitment by imposing a ban “likely to be ignored by smokers, public venue operators, and the general public due to its vague content…”.

New York’s open air smoking ban came into force on the 23rd May, although, according to reports, visitors to the city would be forgiven for not noticing. The pro-freedom group CLASH held a ‘civil-disobedience’ rally five days later

 

 

Scotland latest
Barely 5 weeks after the enactment of yet another anti-tobacco law, ASH Scotland already has proof that everyone just loves it.

Cigarette vending machines will be a thing of the past from October, after a challenge to the ruling was overturned by the Court of Sessions.

Despite continuing legislation designed to reduce smoking rates, the SNP leader, Alex Salmond, is demanding the right to set taxes on cigarettes.

On a high note, the Scottish Licensed Trade Association is starting to make its voice heard.  The SLTA is asking for their ban to be brought into line with the European model of bans.

 

 

The Rest of the News

How the world has changed!  Whereas once upon a time teenagers would tremble in fear at the thought that their parents might rumble them, it seems now that it’s parents who are afraid that their children will find out about their smoking.  Even, it appears, parents who reach the lofty heights of high political office. Though quite how Mr Cleggcan imagine that in his position his older sons, at least, won’t get to hear about his smoking is mystifying.

If three little boys plunge him into such a state of shame and fear, one only has to hope that we aren’t threatened by any major crises during the term of this current Government.   If it is, you’ll find Mr Clegg outside behind the garden shed. Crying, with a fag on the go

***

There’s a dilemma brewing for anti-smoking campaigners.  They love their ‘no smoking’ signs because they are such a visual example of how favoured they have been, but new research finds that their beloved signs might be encouraging the very activity that they dislike so much!

So, what to do?  Keep up the façade of being concerned about ‘health’ and remove them all; or show their true egotistical colours and insist that they stay?   Decisions, decisions.

Go on – you know you want one!

Smoking in a public place makes it to the top 20 list of laws that Britons will regularly break. That a once notoriously law-abiding people will now daily risk criminalisation or summary justice was as good as predicted by eighteenth-century political philosopher William Blackstone.

***

There’s chagrin amongst medicos over an ancient article on the BBC’s website about rolling cigarettes. They are clearly horrified to find that the BBC still doesn’t know that any article not specifically criticising smoking is automatically assumed to be encouraging it, even when, like this article, it is essentially neutral. The BBC obviously still needs training.

***

ASH have been getting all hot under the (designer) collar over Yves Saint Laurent’s decision to market their own brand of cigarettes. YSL know their business, that’s for sure, so why now? Oh dear, another unintended consequence – it seems that, unwittingly, ASH and their friends have effectively made smoking into a fashion statement.

***

Recommended reading – Ohio bar-owner Pam Parker’s detailed and fascinating exploration of the gains being made by Big Business on the back of smoking bans.

 

***

New research from Japan indicates that the smoking ban, far from the proudly-trumpeted claims of helping smokers towards a healthier lifestyle, could in fact bedamaging smokers’ health by making the pub a much less appealing place to visit.

But then, it was never about health.

Freedom2choose:
c/o John H Baker 22 Glastonbury House, Priestfields, Middlesbrough, Cleveland TS3 0LF
Tel/Fax 0845 643 9469

Freedom2choose (Scotland):
c/o The Dalmeny Bar, 297 Leith Walk,
Edinburgh EH6 8SA
Tel 0845 643 9552

Barrel-Dregs, “Beware when the Home Office come calling”. (181)

Dangerous Officialdom and Pubs/Bars



Let me set the scene. It’s 22:30 on a busy Saturday night; you have 350 people in your pre club bar. All the customers are enjoying themselves in an environment that you regard as safe. You are the General Manager and the DPS. You have been open for 6 months without any crime and disorder issues and without any visit from your local Police Licensing Officer or Council Licensing Enforcement Officer other than by way of a quick introduction and a polite hello. 

Then your head doorman tells you that there is a group of 6 individuals outside ranging from a Police Inspector, local Council Licensing Enforcement Officer, a Building Control Officer and a representative from the Home Office. They are here to check the conditions on your Premises Licence. 

Each and every line of the Licence is read through in detail as you continue to try and operate your business; not only that, but you retain legal responsibility for your bar whilst being unable to supervise the premises properly on your busiest night – what if an incident occurs whilst you are being interviewed? 

They find that your Premises Licence Summary has been displayed behind the bar but not so that every page is visible; the notice requesting customers to leave quietly and respect the needs of local residents is no longer on the wall, following a recent refurbishment; one or two other notices are not on display; your fire alarm testing log is not fully up to date because your Assistant Manager has failed to enter the last two tests and you are giving away a free shot to customers with the first drink that they buy when they come into your bar. 

The Police issue you with a Section 19 ‘Closure’ Notice. You are ‘bang to rights’ when it comes to the fact that the fire alarm testing log book has not been kept up to date and the various notices are missing because these are conditions on your Premises Licence, but the Home Office are insisting that every page of your summary needs to be displayed behind the bar. The summary runs to 6 pages and is going to look something akin to wallpaper. Nevertheless, you are still prepared to separate each sheet out. You are not however prepared to stop the free shot being provided with the first drink since this has been promoted now for 2 weeks. The Police insist that giving away a free shot is in breach of the Mandatory Code preventing irresponsible drinks promotions. 

Putting aside the issue of whether or not you have to display each page of the summary, the fact that one free shot being given away is not an ‘Irresponsible Drinks Promotion’ and the enforceability of the fire safety conditions, you are then presented with a Section 19 Closure Notice which you are asked to sign. 

Uncertain what to do, you sign the Section 19 Closure Notice feeling under pressure from so many individuals in authority. 

You are then told to close the Premises immediately because of the fact that the fire alarm log is not up to date, the absence of the notices and the fact that you are not prepared to stop giving away shots. 

You refuse to do so and explain that the failure to display the notices is a minor point that you will put right the following day. You point out that you have been advised that the promotion is not a breach of the mandatory condition but you are then threatened with arrest if you do not close the Premises immediately. 

The Police seek to justify the arrest by saying that it is an arrestable offence under The Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 to continue to provide ‘licensable activities’ in breach of your Premises Licence. The Section 19 Closure Notice states that you will not be able to reopen until the Monday morning when the Fire Officer has had the chance to come and inspect the fire alarm and you will have the notices in place.. 

You feel you have no alternative but to close. 

This is the situation that is now being faced by some operators in England and Wales. 

Following a series of over 50 seminars hosted by the Home Office when Police and Licensing Enforcement Officers were told that should any operator continue to provide licensable activities once they had been given a Section 19 Closure Notice, then they could be arrested under Section 24 of The Police and Criminal Act 1984, a second series of training sessions was organised by the Home Office, this time with the involvement of licensing solicitors who had won the tender with the Home Office to provide such training. 

These sessions are aimed at ensuring Police, Council Licensing Officers and residents are aware of the full range of enforcement options available to them which can be used against Premise Licence Holders. They are encouraged to use them wherever possible. 

This included the use of Section 19 Closure Notices and the threat of arrest should a premises not be closed where they are unable to comply with the requirements set out in the Section 19 Notice. 

Where does this power of arrest come from? 

Section 24 of PACE does confer the power of summary arrest but only if a Police Officer has reasonable grounds for believing that various criteria contained within Section 24 (5) make it necessary to arrest the person: 

The reasons are: 

1. To enable the name of the person in question to be ascertained (in the case where the constable does not know, and cannot readily ascertain, the person’s name, or has reasonable grounds for doubting whether a name given by the person as his name is his real name); 

2. To enable the address of the person in question to be ascertained (in the case where the constable does not know, and cannot readily ascertain, the person’s address, or has reasonable grounds for doubting whether an address given by the person as his address is his real name); 

3. To prevent the person in question: 

(a) Causing physical injury to himself or any other person; 

(b) Suffering physical injury ; 

(c) Causing loss of or damage to property; 

(d) Committing an offence against public decency (subject to subsection (6)); or 

(e) Causing an unlawful obstruction of the highway. 

4. To protect a child or other vulnerable person from the person in question; 

5. To allow the prompt and effective investigation of the offence or of the conduct of the person in question; 

6. To prevent any prosecution for the offence form being hindered by the disappearance of the person in question, 

It is difficult to envisage how any of those grounds could apply to our poor pre-club bar owner (whose details are contained on his personal licence) and indeed many other operators up and down England and Wales. Why therefore are the Home Office advising Police that they can threaten operators with arrest if they are unable to comply fully with the Section 19 Closure Notice, and when this goes against long established common law principles that it deprives someone of his liberty, is an extremely serious step? 

This is a question the Home Office need to answer but for our part we would advise any operators to contact their licensing solicitor immediately if the Home Office come knocking because, in our view, unless there are exceptional circumstances then there is no power of arrest for failing to comply with a Section 19 Closure Notice immediately and closing the Premises. Of course prosecution could follow, particularly as you are on notice that you are now in breach of your Premises Licence and any due diligence defence is unlikely to succeed. However, undue pressure is being put on the trade and the good working relationships which have been established over many years between Councils and Police Licensing Officers are being undermined. 

For more information please contact Jonathan Smith