Monthly Archives: November 2017

Garlic Butter

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Garlic butter, you either love it or hate it.

As a flavour enhancer it is a fantastic addition to an main course or starter where appropriate.

The secret of garlic butter is to make it yourself, it is incredibly easy, bought garlic butter, in my experience is a nightmare, it normally consists of butter with garlic salt and some others additives, the majority leaving a heavy garlic taste in your mouth the next morning.

If this last comment makes garlic butter manufacturers modify their production we will have achieved something.

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Registered investment advisor???

Registered investment advisor

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How Do You Know He Is The Right Investment Advisor?

Putting a significant amount of money in an investment can be a make or break decision for anyone who has just acquired new wealth. If you are one of them, you definitely would not want to make a decision that would break your financially well-off status. It is either that you would try your best to learn good investing or find an investment advisor who can help you make a good investment. But if you seek the help of an advisor, how would you know he is the right one to help you with securing your wealth?
When looking for a good investment advisor you have to check if he is indeed a qualified professional to help you manage your wealth. You have to check if he is a registered investment advisor and if he is affiliated with any association that would make him a lot more credible for the job. You have to make sure he has passed all the necessary qualifying examinations for a registered investment advisor just so you would be able to guarantee that he knows how investments work.
Other than the technical requirements, it would also greatly help you to know if you are looking at the right investment advisor if you are able to do researches about him online. Advisors who are up to date with everything is a good choice because he would know exactly what kind of investment would give you a reasonable profit and he knows how to evolve with the way things are in our current economic status.
Another very good way of finding out if the advisor you are looking at is a good choice as an investment advisor for your newly acquired wealth is by asking around especially those people who have had investment experiences with him. You can tell based on other people’s stories if he is the right person to trust or you would be better of looking for someone else. Advisors who have been proven by time and experience are usually a lot better choice than those who are new in the business and would just make your investment a training ground. You would definitely not want to risk your wealth on them.
Although some people find it convenient to pay for investment advisors who are at a fixed-rate service fee because they are able to budget their money accordingly, it would still be best if you hire an investment advisor that works on a commission based service fee. The pat that you will need to give them would be a percentage of what profit you will be getting from the investment they are helping you with. This way, the investment advisor you will be hiring will be driven to do the best for your investment because it will also earn them a bigger amount of money at the end of the day.
You did not acquire your wealth as quickly as losing it in a few days just because of wrong investment handling so you definitely should not risk it for the wrong advisor.

Why Should You Hire A Registered Investment Advisor?

Being thrifty by all means is very common especially to those in business industries. Every amount of money means a lot to them which is why as much as possible they would not want to lose any if they are not getting double the amount in return. By being thrifty, they have acquired the wealth that they have now. Because they have acquired quite a lot, they would need help from other people who know more about investing and managing wealth. Even if they would not want to spend money on someone to do something that they think they can do anyway, they would have to hire an investment advisor. Most people, out of being thrifty, would rather just hire any investment advisor who has the lowest professional fee. But if you are after the security of your wealth and guaranteed smart investing, you should be hiring a registered investment advisor.
A registered investment advisor could either be a firm or an individual who is registered to the Securities and Exchange Commission. However you decide to invest your wealth and no matter how much wealth you give an investment, you are guaranteed that your registered investment advisor is taking good care of it. You are guaranteed that he does everything accordingly and legally because he would not want to do anything that would stain his name or the firm that he is associated with or be taken off the Securities and Exchange Commission’s list.
A registered investment advisor is also a lot better to trust with your wealth primarily because they would not be able to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission if they have not passed all examination requirements that would prove their intellectual capacity to handle an advisor’s tasks. You will be able to get the guarantee that he is licensed and he knows what he is doing.
Although we would definitely not want it to happen, but just in case your advisor turns against you, it would be a lot easier for you to chase him down. A registered investment advisor’s important details are definitely with the Securities and Exchange Commission and there is no way that he can run away from you.
Making an investment can be a make or break decision. Handling a significantly huge amount of wealth can be brain racking. Although we may be intelligent enough to plan things, we would still be in need of capable and knowledgeable people to help us put those plans into action. Any huge investment is not going to survive with just one man.
You probably worked hard to earn your wealth and you definitely would not want to lose it just because you were too thrifty to consider hiring a registered investment advisor. If it is for something you have worked so hard for, you should guarantee security and one way to do it with an investment is to find someone you can hold liable-a registered investment advisor.

Your Financial Advisor is Biased by Their Wallet

When you work for a company, you do what the boss says. When you’re told this is how to make a living, you do it. When you’re shown how the top earners made it big, you go for it. Who can knock success, right? But your financial success depends on your attention here, because your financial advisor’s best interest may not be what is best for you.
I want to give you an idea of the type of money that changes hands between fund family companies and financial advisors. Fund companies spend billions of dollars on financial advisors in the form of straight pay outs, fees, commissions, entertainment, trips, 12B-1 fees, direct brokerage fees, pay-to-play fees and supermarket funds fees. These companies would not spend billions of dollars if it weren’t effective.
Financial advisors take these payments because it’s just how most of them make a living in this industry. Financial advisors aren’t dummies; they sell what pays the most, and not necessarily what is best for their client.
I am going to give an example of a financial advising company, just to show this point. There are many publicly traded financial advising companies. You shouldn’t work with any of them, just like you should only buy actively managed mutual funds. The exemplar company is called Edward Jones. They sell mutual funds to their investors. They’re not publicly traded, so they rank OK on that score. But the same forces are at work, and the general partners who are senior investment reps and other owners of the company take the place of the stockholders in a publicly traded company. Most people know them as financial planners or financial advisors. But what they may not know about this company is that they have a preferred list of the fund families that they promote. To be on that preferred list, the fund families have to pay dearly in fees and commissions.
When their employees go through training, they’re only introduced to these seven preferred mutual fund groups. This company even goes so far as to discourage their employees from contacting other fund companies from outside the preferred list. In fact, employee bonuses are linked to the selling of the preferred list.
In 2004, this firm got caught, along with other financial investment companies. They had collected $300 million in secret payments. And 95 % of the time, they sold mutual funds on their preferred list. Because the company didn’t disclose relationships with the preferred list, they had to pay upwards of $75 million in fines to reimburse investors. However, they got paid much more than what was given back to their investors. To put this in perspective, in 2005 alone, after the settlement of $75 million, Edward Jones received $172 million in revenue sharing fees from their preferred seven fund families. That was one-third of their pretax income. A third of their income comes from these fees.
That isn’t objective or unbiased. It’s not proper behavior for a fiduciary. All these years after the litigation, on their website they state, “We focus on the individual investor, not big corporations.” In fact, this seems even worse, because their reps are right there in the communities they sell to. Even with these small offices based in local communities, profits were more important than their clients, which would demonstrate that the focus is on their owners and on profitability.
If you’re planning to work with a financial planner, work with one who does not work for a publicly traded company – or a company that acts like one – because there’s less likelihood of getting unbiased, objective advice. Also important to know is the kind of research that financial advisors do, because it, too, is presented as objective evidence that will make you more money. But for whom does this really make more money?

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Morgan & Clarke November Newsletter 2017

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Pigeon House, The Broadway,

Oakridge Lynch, Stroud, Glos. GL6 7NU

Email: Phone: 01285 719292 and 01285 760370

(Also at: London, Cardiff, Braunton, Lewes)

NOVEMBER 2017 NO. 60


This is a single topic Newsletter broadly based around energy efficiency and associated dilapidations. What we are looking at is the passage of time and two associated quotations particularly stand out.

The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot “ Michael Altschuler.

The time for action is now. It’s never too late to do something “ Carl Sandburg.

The Energy Efficiency Regulations 2015 laid down that from the 1st April 2018 (yes that’s only six months away) it will be unlawful to grant a new commercial lease, as commercial lease renewal or a commercial lease extension to an existing or new tenant of a property that has an Energy Performance Certificate of F or G. From 1st April 2023 it will be illegal to allow existing lettings of F and G rated properties to continue.

There are considerable teeth in the new legislation concerning Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) because the requirements link to previously issued Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) many of which are inaccurate and were not the subject of any independent checking system.

Whilst it is appreciated that there are a large number of competent and accurate EPCs, we have seen some very sloppy certificates, even with complete floors being missed out.

It is more than likely that M.E.E.S. is unknown to you. However it will become very much a “hot topic” when the legislation bites!


The intention of the new legislation is to stop a new letting of a sub-standard property which not only is the grant of a brand new lease, but is also the granting of an extension to an existing tenant. This then cross-references with the new Pubs Code and the steadfast mantra issued by the six companies affected by the legislation that MRO can only be issued on the back of a new five-year lease. Curiously if a Deed of Variation for supply-terms is the preferred route, the MEES Regulations don’t apply. So if the new five-year lease route is taken the MEES Regulations will apply to every MRO lease with NO exceptions.


A well advised tenant is perfectly at liberty to seek his/her own re-assessment of a current EPC with many of the previous EPCs that were issued from 2008 onwards being considered as inaccurate. They only have a lifespan of ten years so the very early ones are now nearing expiry. We think it likely that there are many properties with ratings of E or even D that could easily be downgraded to either F or G on re-assessment. So what is the knock-on effect of a very accurate EPC highlighting that the property is sub-standard.

  • If a Schedule of Dilapidations (it should be Interim not Terminal) is issued on the back of a proposed new five-year lease linked to MRO a new EPC could show that non-compliance with the MEES Regulations will render the Landlords Dilapidations Schedule subject to supercession to comply with the required updated works.

  • Rent reviews of a sub-standard property will be interesting as it is the Landlords responsibility in every single case, not the tenants, to put the building into MEES compliance.

  • New lease negotiations will also present a new set of ground rules if a sub-standard property is being let prior to the implementation of the MEES Regulations from 1st April 2018.


Curiously very little has been mentioned as the clock ticks down towards 1st April 2018. This is specifically linked with the requirement side-by-side with MRO for Dilapidations Schedules well in advance of any decision from the PCA regarding the direction to be taken for the grant of MRO. Make no mistake, it is the Landlord that is responsible for ensuring that a building is MEES compliant, not the Tenant. In the normal world, out of the clutches of MRO, it would be sensible in the coming months for Landlords of F and G rated buildings to seek to circumvent incurring MEES penalties (fines of up to £150,000 per three months’ infringement) by hurrying through the grant of new leases prior to 1st April. However the elephant in the room is the PCA and the total lack of progress in the confirmation of the direction of MRO deliverance.


As a volume driven industry EPC Assessment was initially very much under regulated with depressed fees and work volumes resulting in a lack of accuracy or focus. Not to forget that the earliest EPCs that were undertaken in 2008 were on the back of the energy performance of Building Regulations 2007. Those ten years seem to have passed with horrifying speed and the Building Regulations constantly updated.

However the industry has matured and current assessments are much more closely regulated with the associated software used in the production of EPCs linked with the Building Regulations (Part L.). This has tightened up compliance to make it much harder to achieve the minimum E rating. It is highly likely that even the reassessment of a property rated D in, say, 2012 could easily produce a lower rating and drop into the non-compliance bracket.


Recent Industry statistics have indicated that 65% of commercial EPCs are rated at D or lower. It is understood that almost 230,000 D and E-rated properties could easily be downgraded to either F or G. This of course applies to all types of commercial property, not just leisure/pub related uses.


If a commercial property is EPC re-rated as “sub-standard it is the Landlords responsibility to effect all of the associated repairs. This will have a knock-on effect either with leaving properties vacant or spending the money with repercussions on periods of down-trading while the work is being undertaken.

  • The knock-on effect for property advisers which pulls in Surveyors, Valuers, Solicitors, Trade Advisers stand to face Professional Indemnity insurance claims for sub-standard buildings becoming un-lettable.

  • There is even a knock-on effect with sources of acquisition finance if the MEES Regulations do not receive full compliance.


With the MEES Regulations now only six months distant it seems quite remarkable that Landlords contemplating the grant of new leases or lease extensions are not building in new EPC surveys on the back of Dilapidations requirements. Put simply, if a commercial building, i.e., pub, restaurant, nightclub, hotel or similar is let after the 1st April 2018 it has to be MEES compliant.

MRO has thrown a huge spanner in the works due to the lack of decision making by the PCA and the inevitable delays that will surely happen if the PCA finally decides that MRO deliverance should be by the route of a new five-year lease. Despite the irony that a Deed of Variation would side-step the MEES Regulations, you have ‘the rock and the hard place’ inevitability that if such a recommendation were made by the PCA for the Deed of Variation route that there will be heavyweight legal appeals to try to reverse that decision.

Interesting times!

And finally, to end on a slightly humorous note, a quote from Dean Martin :

I once shook hands with John Wayne and my whole right side sobered up.

All the best from the Team at M & C


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This has been a litany of bureaucracy, frustration and, at times, mind-numbing procedural delays. It would seem that even the Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy Committee has now lost patience with Paul Newby, the Pubs Code Adjudicator. The Clerk to the BEISSC, Chris Shaw, has confirmed that the letter from Rachel Reeves MP, Chair of the BEISSC, has written to Paul Newby on 10th October and that that letter has been openly published on the BEISSC website which can be found at:-

To quote from the third and fourth paragraphs of that published letter:-

in particular, how many tenants have obtained new MRO Agreements; how many tenants have been through the entire MRO process and obtained an independently assessed rent? How many Arbitration decisions have you made and how many applications are awaiting decision, and what steps have you taken to ensure timely decisions are taken?

What assessments have you made about the workings of the Code and its enforcement following the verification exercise you commissioned which reported in August? What representations have you made to the Ministers on the effectiveness of the Code and the way that the MRO process is being followed by pub-owning companies and tenants? It would be helpful to have a response by 26 October.

From our viewpoint, cases that started off in September 2016 and all subsequent cases, almost all of which represented precisely the same thing, namely the validity of MRO only being granted under the terms of a five year lease, set against either a free-of-tie release letter or Deed of Variation have not received one single Arbitration Award which establishes that principle. It is absolutely scandalous that over a year has now passed with absolutely nothing on this core issue for which there are countless applications. We are still continuing to file such applications on a regular basis knowing that, at some stage, surely an Arbitration Award must be issued to ratify the principle concerned. The domino effect could be dramatic ..BUT¦

Should the decision go against the Pubcos and Brewers affected by the legislation, we have heard said many times that certainly two of the Pubcos would then instigate an appeal to the highest Courts in the land. We all know that the senior judicial system moves exceeding slow in the consideration of such a situation. Much is at stake, specifically because if the decision is upheld it would favour either a Deed of Variation or Tie Release letter and, in so doing, would then achieve the underlining will of Parliament that was to make the consideration of the MRO Option a relatively straightforward affair. That would then be the thin edge of the wedge for companies wholly dependent upon a massive slice of income from wholesale contribution.

Yes, it may take years but if the route to MRO is made relatively straightforward, suddenly there would be a King’s New Clothes moment of recognition and the penny will drop that servicing massive toxic loans might not be the easiest thing in the world if there is a dramatic and continuing reduction in wholesale contribution or what is sometimes known as the wet rent if tied publicans can find a straightforward avenue for MRO.


An emerging unforeseen black hole in the Pubs Code legislation is that of the rental determination by the Independent Assessor. If you look back at other methods of Third Party Referral RICS Arbitration, RICS Independent Experts or the Independent Expert appointed under the PIRRS system, – the Determination as it is called (not an award) is absolutely final and binding on both parties. The PIRRS Third Party Referral requires a distinct and separate Deed of Variation which confirms the binding nature of the outcome. So far all fairly simple and straightforward.

However, under the Pubs Code the Independent Assessor Determination surprisingly is not binding on both parties. This has resulted in quite a large number of immediate appeals by the Pubcos against the rent that has been decided, fundamentally because they don’t like the answer. Referrals have been made to the PCA (which is perfectly legal) under Regulation 38(4)(a) and, just to remind you, the associated wording is as follows.

MRO procedure where a referral is made to the Adjudicator in connection with the Independent Assessor…..(4) where the pub owning business or the tied pub tenant considers that (a) the rent determined is not the market rent.

So if you don’t like the rent for the basic reason that it isn’t high enough (landlord) or it isn’t low enough (tenant), you can refer the whole affair to the Arbitrator, Paul Newby. Further delay and on and on….

There is, however, one very big problem which we have highlighted in a recent case to the PCA which goes something like this.

The Complainant is saying that they don’t like the rent conclusion. What they are saying is that the Independent Assessor (IA) has got it wrong. However, the Independent Assessor who has to issue a detailed written Determination and associated reasons has been acting as an Independent Expert. Those investigations and associated reasons are not constrained by the Arbitration Act and are certainly not constrained only within the bounds of the evidence presented. It is not the evidence presented that is being questioned, it is the interpretation of that evidence that has resulted in a rent that one of the parties does not like. If he asks for an expansion of reasons/evidence linked to the case presented to the Independent Assessor, more problems. That would be NEW evidence not considered by the Independent Assessor.

Now we have the big problem! Paul Newby is an Arbitrator, not an Independent Expert. For him to delve into the thinking process of the Independent Assessor he would have to take on the mind-set of an Independent Expert. This he cannot do acting as an Arbitrator under the constraints of the Arbitration Act 1996. Having posed the problem to the PCA, we are still awaiting an answer.

All the best from the Team at M & C


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Guide to Fluoxetine and Alcohol

Guide to Fluoxetine and Alcohol

Guide to Fluoxetine and Alcohol

Fluoxetine is an anti-depressant commonly consumed in the United Kingdom. Fluoxetine is also known as Prozac. Fluoxetine is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). Fluoxetine works by manipulating neurotransmitters located in the brain.

Mixing fluoxetine with alcohol has many undesirable side effects. These side effects include drowsiness, coordination problems, and dizziness.

Due to these side effects, we recommend you avoid taking Fluoxetine if you are addicted to alcohol. Despite the ill effects of mixing Fluoxetine with alcohol, many GPs in the United Kingdom actively prescribe Fluoxetine to patients who they know suffer from alcoholism.

Fluoxetine works by inhibiting the uptake of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps to control your mood.

What psychiatric disorders does fluoxetine treat?

Fluoxetine is frequently prescribed to treat the following health problems:

  • Panic disorder
  • Depression
  • Bulimia nervosa
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Major depressive disorder (MDD)
  • Bipolar disorder

What happens to the brain when you drink alcohol?

Many people consume alcohol for social reasons. Others prefer to drink alcohol for effect. This is when you drink alcohol to alleviate pain or anxiety. It’s thus not difficult to realise that drinking alcohol is perhaps more common amongst people who suffer from depression. However, alcohol is itself is a depressant. When you consume alcohol, your brain’s central down regulator, GABA-A, is stimulated. GABA-A depresses your body and mind. This is because GABA-A is an inhibitory neurotransmitter.

What are the effects of alcohol if I suffer from depression?

Because alcohol is classed as a depressant, when you drink alcohol, you aggravate the symptoms of your depression. This means it’s never a good idea to drink alcohol if you suffer from depression. If you don’t suffer from depression, drinking large amounts of alcohol may actually cause you to start suffering from clinical depression.

What are the symptoms of depression?

You may suffer from depression and not even be aware that you suffer from depression. Symptoms of depression to be on the lookout for include:

  • Feelings of worthlessness
  • Suicidal ideation
  • You lose interest in hobbies you used to enjoy
  • Frequent feelings of sadness

The dangers of mixing fluoxetine and alcohol

The main side-effects of fluoxetine include tiredness, impaired coordination, and alertness. The side effects of fluoxetine are thus somewhat similar to alcohol’s side effects. Combining alcohol and fluoxetine will, therefore, compound these shared side effects. In fact, mixing alcohol and fluoxetine may make you feel sedated. This is clearly dangerous if you operate a vehicle of any sort or heavy machinery.

Below, we list the most common side effects experienced when you mix fluoxetine with alcohol:

  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Suicidal ideation

Does alcohol stop fluoxetine from working?

When you consume alcohol, you will diminish the positive effects of fluoxetine. Alcohol stops fluoxetine from working properly. Many people may consume fluoxetine as a way of preventing the depressive effects of alcohol. This thinking is purely fictional. Taking fluoxetine will not prevent the depressive effects of alcohol.

To get the full benefits offered by fluoxetine, stop drinking alcohol immediately. If you suffer from alcoholism, you will need to start a medically assisted detox programme because abruptly stopping alcohol could lead to dangerous withdrawal symptoms.

Once you’ve conquered your addiction to alcohol in a safe and controlled manner, you may then resume your usage of fluoxetine. In fact, for those of you who are recovering from alcoholism, taking fluoxetine may actually help you avoid relapse.

Can I stop taking anti-depressants if I’ve drunk alcohol?

We advise that you do not stop taking anti-depressants without your doctor’s advice. When you abruptly stop taking anti-depressants, you may suffer from a range of adverse withdrawal symptoms. These withdrawal symptoms could have major psychological ramifications. It may be particularly unpleasant if you abruptly stop taking antidepressants and then return to their use within a few days’ time.

Getting help now

If you suffer from alcoholism and you are a user of fluoxetine, you may benefit by contacting Rehab 4 Alcoholism today on 0800 111 4108. When you contact us, we carry out a telephone assessment. This assessment allows us to assess your needs so that we may advise you on attending a rehab programme that’s right for your needs.


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Selling a Pub, Restaurant or Licensed Property lease or tenancy, Check List


Selling a Pub, Restaurant or Licensed Property lease or tenancy, Check List. 

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This Checklist covers a large area of Taking over a Business. As no two situations are the same, only the basic position is outlined. The answers do not provide a complete or authoritative statement of the law, nor do they constitute legal advice by the author. The information provided is only a snapshot: it does not create a contractual relationship nor does it form part of any other advice, whether paid or free.

An Essential Guide before you leave a Business.

This Check List is to provide information for anyone that is looking to assign a lease, tenancy or not renew a lease, we have tried to include most eventualities for normal leases etc., it is vital to consult with a professional specialist if you should be in doubt about any issue whatsoever, leases may appear to be the same, but they may not be. This Checklist information is for your guidance and aimed at making you forewarned on a number of issues.

1.In addition it is always advisable to use a Lawyer specialising in Commercial Property, if you want to get your retained monies released quickly.
It is essential that there is a ‘Certificate of Compliance’ at hand over. This is the validation that ALL statutory and civic regulations are complied with. This is the job of the solicitor acting for the ingoer. If there is inadequate compliance, then the solicitor takes the rap for not ensuring everything was in order from the start.

2.You should have had a Survey or Schedule of Condition, agreed with the Landlord or their Agent, when you took over the lease or at whatever juncture you acquired the lease. If you did not, the landlord can make as many spurious claims as he can get away with, your only option is to instruct a surveyor to act for you to dispute claims that are historical and were in existence before you took on the lease. (See Dilapidations)

3.You may need the services of a Valuer to assess the value of the Fixtures and Fittings (See Fixtures and Fittings)

4.You may also need a Stocktaker (See Stock at Valuation)

5.Guarantee Agreement, if you have this in your lease and you are assigning the lease, you need to know what this entails. You can buy yourself out of this, but it is not cheap. You are responsible to the Landlord for the assignee during the period that he holds the lease, as though you were trading and responsible for the whole building under the conditions of the lease.


1) The Dilapidations minefield. An FRI (Full Repairing and Insuring) lease requires ‘to put and keep in good and substantial repair’. The key word is ‘put’. Even if the predecessor thought things were about OK, another surveyor might find something that requires putting into good repair. An example is The Gunners pub in London. Punch did a dilapidations survey in 2011 and did not raise the issue of the extensive bar floor needing treatment. The Freehold was sold to a developer and the new dilapidations survey in December 2014 required the bar floor to be sanded down and varnished at a cost of £2500. The same thing with the structural condition. Cracks can and are covered over. What happens if a new structural crack appears ? Under an FRI lease, it is the tenant who is responsible for everything, which includes the structure.

2) Biggest minefield of the lot is what is known as, ’inherent structural defects’. Small but vital example was a survey carried out for the ingoer. It was declared in the report that a defective stone shingle roof over an outhouse and massive ivy growth (must have been well over 100 years old) were inherent defects and were not the tenants responsibility. Both will be massively expensive to remedy. Greyhound at Broughton was another case in point. New Enterprise lease. Defective roof timbers in an extensive and historic store barn probably over 200 years old. Roof still holds up and may well survive for another 50 years. However the responsibility for its eventual costly repair now excluded from the tenant’s obligations.

3) Always get hold of the dilapidations schedule that was served on the predecessor in title to see what was required and to check if everything has actually been done. Many’s the time there are still things outstanding.

In theory the building should be returned to the same state that you took it over in at the start of the lease.

Obvious improvements are often accepted, though some surveyors insist that all improvements are removed, this usually applies to vacant commercial properties e.g. factories, shops etc.

With pubs/restaurants any improvements enhance its value, assuming that the landlord agreeable.

Things like small holes in walls where fittings have been, need filling, a sneaky trick if it all looks fine is to leave a small obvious defect and then claim you missed it, if a surveyor doesn’t find anything they go looking.

You will be expected to Paint and Decorate according to the conditions of the lease.


If you have double glazing, if you know which company supplied it, get them to give you a quote for servicing and make good, most of it is like Meccano, it can all be replaced, the hinges, locks, new seals and the double glazed glass, otherwise find a local firm to give you a quote.

The Roof

This is always a certain dilapidations issue, a word with a local good roofer could save you a lot of problems.

Guttering and Drainage

Another certain dilapidations issue, again ensure that nothing is obviously broken and all the sewers are clear and working.

Boiler and other Gas appliances

Ensure that they have all been checked and a current certificate available.

Electrical Wiring

Hopefully you will have had the services of a local electrician, who will give you an up to date certificate or warranty of the state of the electrical wiring etc.

Another nasty sting is, if you took over a lease from another leaseholder, provided his dilapidations were settled before you took the lease, then dilapidations only apply to your time with the lease, if they were not agreed and carried out you could be liable for them.

In some case the previous lessee has paid for the dilapidations and they have not been carried out, this is illegal, but it needs proving.

The key things that you need are your original survey and the original surveyor if possible or a surveyor in any dispute.

Fixtures & Fittings

You need a copy of the F & F list that you paid for with prices if possible, a lot of valuers don’t give individual prices, just a ball park figure.

If you do find the Pub Co valuer gives a sensible figure, it could save you money, but you need to ensure that full payment is within seven days or on completion.

On F & F you very seldom get back what you paid originally, if you have invested heavily on F & F during your time, you will be lucky to recoup the investment. It is a rip off if the lease has expired and the property goes back to the Pub Co, they will sell your F & F at considerably more than they have paid you.

Stocktaker and Stock at Valuation (SAV)

You should also use a stocktaker, unless the stock is minimal, in which case it may pay you to split the fees with the Pub Co stocktaker.

It is always worth taking as much stock as possible away with you, all opened food and cleaning materials, they are valueless in a stock take, all opened bottles of spirits and wine etc., that you don’t sell on your last night and anything else that you can use, run all the tapped barrels out by selling the beer off at cost price+.

Essential Information that needs attending to at some stage.

Bank business accounts, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary.

Cash and Carry Account, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary.

Cash and Change for Tills and Machines to be removed and banked.

Cleaning Contracts and supplies for Toilets, Kitchens, Bars etc. notify date of ceasing trading if necessary (Terminate)

Close Business for at least mid-day for stocktaking etc.

Contract to assign Business, Signed and completion time, ensure that solicitor has received the money, unless another arrangement has been made.

Contracts of Employment for Staff, Copies for the assignee.

Diary for all Bookings and Incidents, retain and ensure all future bookings are passed on to assignee, or cancelled formally if assignee does not want them.

EHO Registration and Food & Hygiene Certs, scores on the doors etc.

Energy Suppliers, Annual Contract notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Equipment details of any outstanding rented or financed

Epos Tills make sure you have all the instructions to pass on

External Notices for Car Parks and Gardens, advise assignee

Fire safety equipment contract, Risk Assessment notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

First Aid Boxes with Accident Books, retain copies of books for possible future or spurious claims

Fixtures and Fittings, ensure that they are exactly as agreed with assignee, any that are personal must be declared and excluded from the F & F list.

Gaming and music machines rental agreements, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Heating Service Record for Boilers and any others

Inland Revenue if you have staff, ensure that you are up to date with all payments and records

Insurance, Business and property, public Liability notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Notify Staff of your leaving and ensure that any staff leaving are passed on to the assignee

Inventory of everything included in the Purchase of the Business and the condition

Licences Pub and Machines, your Solicitor should have all the details, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary and claim any refund

Local suppliers Accounts:- Butcher, Baker, Builders Merchant, Catering equipment, Computer Service, Dry Goods, Frozen and Fresh Food, Gaming Machines, Garage local, Greengrocer, Ironmonger, Local Brewers, Office Equipment, Plumber, Electrician, Refrigeration Engineer, Wine Supplier, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary and settle accounts.

Notify Staff of your leaving and ensure that any staff leaving details are passed on to the assignee

PDQ Machines for Credit Card notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Performing Rights and PPL Phonographic Performance, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary and claim refund

Personal Licence and designated Premises Supervisor, Check with your Solicitor and notify date of ceasing holding the licence and forwarding address

Phone Numbers of Essential Contacts for assignee

Rates payable and dates, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Refuse Collection and Waste Disposal, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Regulations for Disabled Compliance

Service Contracts, Rodents, Equipment, Cleaning, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary

Sky or other TV Contract and TV licences, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary, claim refund

Staff Job Description (Jobs Manual is worth passing on)

Staff paperwork Inland Revenue, hours etc., your Accountant will advise, retain copies and details of all staff passed on to the assignee.

Staff References, retain copies for yourself

Staff Redundancy, Details of possible redundancy commitment for existing staff in cost, to you. Seek your accountants advice as to whether you have an obligation for redundancy.

Stocktaker for wet and dry goods. (See above)

Telephone Details

Trading accounts for suppliers:-National Brewers, Gas supplies for Beer Cellar, Wines and Spirits, Services, Gas, Electricity, Oil etc., Cellar Equipment where applicable, notify date of ceasing trading if necessary, check for over payments

VAT Registration, seek your accountants advice on deregistering

Website and email addresses

Optional Information that can be passed to the assignee

Asbestos Report including old Artex Ceilings and Walls

Auto Enrolment, Staff Pensions

Beer Cellar confirm ownership of equipment

Brewery Delivery time and other Delivery Days for new licensee

Brulines if applicable, advise of any outstanding issues

Certification for all electrical appliances where applicable (See above)

Cellar Management, provide information for the new licensee

Cold Storage Check

Deliveries on the Day

Delivery Days for all suppliers and order Days

Employment Law Hotline for Members of USE

Environmental Performance Certificate (EPC), Energy Efficiency Certificate as from April 2018, click on link below for information, Read More

First Aid training for Staff

Health and Safety Hotline for USE Members

Licensing and Gambling legislation, 24 hour Hot Line 0114 2600 344

Operating schedule if relevant

Recipes for all dishes where the assignee is likely to use them

Staff Dress Code, if appropriate

Weights and measures signs and compliance


Allergens came in last year Read More

Scores on the Doors an essential for all businesses involving Food Hygiene, Read More

Credit and cash Flow  More

FAQ’s  on running a Business More

Note:- Everyone buying a commercial property, especially a lease should have had a Schedule of Condition or Survey, to validate the state of condition PRIOR to the original takeover date. If there were any outstanding wants of repair or decoration, then either the Landlord or the previous Lessee is responsible, if it is left until a later date, no action can be taken without documentary proof agreed with the Landlord or his Agent.

If you find anything that you consider should also be in the Check List, please email us at, we appreciate your input, if it will help others, we have tried to cover the normal aspects of an assignment, but there are anomalies which we may have no knowledge at this time.

If you would like to read the latest Industry News and Corporate Activity, please click on the following link, before 9.00 am for yesterdays News, click on the link after 9.00 am for latest Weekday’s News.

If you would like another link to Leisure Industry news, please click on the following Link gives current day’s news from 8am.

copyright (©) 2015,

Budget News Snapshot; What does it mean for the hospitality sector? JG&Partners

Budget News Snapshot; What does it mean for the hospitality sector?

Posted: 22 Nov 2017 08:00 AM PST

Philip Hammond MP, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, has delivered the second Budget today. A number of factors announced will impact on the Hospitality Sector, the areas of impact initially noted in the industry are: Excise duty A Freeze on duty for beer, wine, Cider and spirits an estimated saving of around £115m to hospitality businesses. White cider leg…

Morgan & Clarke, October Newsletter 2017


Pigeon House, The Broadway,

Oakridge Lynch, Stroud, Glos. GL6 7NU

Email: Phone: 01285 719292 and 01285 760370

(Also at: London, Cardiff, Braunton, and Lewes)

OCTOBER 2017 NO. 59

There has been an untimely break in continuity for the issuance of our regular Newsletters, due almost entirely to a massive pressure of work and sustaining the associated level of quality and accuracy that we hold very dear. Not that that level of work has in any way diminished but such a vital number of economic and industry events have occurred in the last few months that time has been found to again “spread the word”.

Morgan & Clarke have always been deeply involved in rent review issues amongst the many other disciplines for which we are renowned. To state the self-evident, the art or science of rent review which is almost always undertaken on a profits’ test basis (Wetherspoons’ square footage related valuations excepted), the exercise is one of looking forward into either the next three or five years until the next rent review. The rent agreed now must continue to be affordable over that fixed period and due allowance made for the recurrent factor that rents are being artificially inflated in many cases as a result of annual indexation.

On that point, the annual rent rise indexation is always linked with the Retail Price Index (RPI). The RPI twelve month rate, January 2016 to January 2017 is recorded at 2.6%. However, that year-on-year statistical analysis must be put in context with the latest RPI release for October 2017 which is 3.9% and a year-on-year forecast of 4%. Simple maths here! If you extend that over a five year period with no compounding, a rent could increase by 20%. This must be borne in context with the settling of a current rent review. Even the Consumer Prices Index linked to owner-occupiers housing costs where the twelve months’ inflation rate was 2.8% in September 2017 was only as high as this rate way back in March 2012. Both rates are at alarming high points.


It’s all very well confirming a selected number of trade operators’ increases in annual sales. Generally these are between 1% and 6% maximum. However, the trotting-out of increased sales does not confirm profitability as bottom-line profits are rarely released. The creation of a “roses round the door” warm economic feeling is, to a degree, wholly misleading.


To quote from an article in the PMA on 16 October which reported the Coffer Peach overview, specifically concerning London, which is always seen as a special trading market almost unique to itself:

“London Restaurants saw like-for-like down 3.2% in September; Britain’s managed pubs, bars and restaurants saw like-for-like sales decline 0.9% in September as the public appeared to pull back on spending on eating and drinking out. Restaurants in London were worst hit suffering a 3.2% fall in collective, like-for-like sales compared to September last year.”

We have been undertaking a number of rent reviews where the pubs concerned are effectively operating as restaurants. We always have the view that if sales are over 65% dry, then the property is more of a restaurant than a pub. One of the telling items we have been asking is the percentage of bookings that are received for either a Friday or Saturday night. Are they the same? Are they up or are they down? It is a significant statistical analysis that is hardly ever noticed, but very telling. Both in London and in other parts of the UK (excluding Scotland and Northern Ireland as we don’t venture that far), the underlying reaction, which has even been as some surprise to our numerous Clients when analysing the statistics, is that reservations for Friday and Saturday night eating out are almost uniformly lower than the same period last year, some as much as 30%.

Commenting on the state of the current market, we can quote from an article by Alexander Peace, the Estates Gazette – Retail and Leisure/Pubs/Autumn 2017 – for which we are very grateful.

“(continuing viability) part of this is due to a growing abstemiousness in the UK population and part of it is due to changing youth habits. But perhaps most importantly is the cost of alcohol and the fact more people drink at home and young people are less inclined to go out thanks to the rise of dating apps. Why bother going out when you can get a date at home from your iPhone? Millennials are also more health conscious than previous generations and if they go out, they drink less. A survey by Heineken in 2016 found that on a night out, 75% of millennials will opt to drink in moderation.”

In the process of undertaking a pub rent review in Notting Hill the other day, and it may come as some surprise to our readers who are not familiar with London Bar Prices, that the following represented a fairly standard price structure.



Stowford Press










Old Rosie


The comment from the publican was that well  sales are holding up, sort of.


You may be aware that the Bank of England is becoming concerned about increasing debt levels. This was further confirmed when the Governor, Mark Carney, made an appearance at Committee level in the Houses of Parliament on 17 October to voice his concerns. A recent Bank of England survey or credit conditions amongst retail banks suggests the following:

The Report found that a net balance of 28.6% of lenders said they planned to make less unsecured credit available in the next quarter rather than more, which is the lowest balance since the depths of the global financial crisis in 2008. This tightening has already started with the Report showing more lenders had restricted the flow of secured credit, which of course includes personal loans, overdrafts, car finance schemes and, most importantly, credit card debt over the last three months than at any time since 2009.

Going back to our survey of the bookings level in pubs that operate more as restaurants, it is a given that a large number of restaurant bills are settled by credit card. The conclusions are self-evident as the flow of consumer credit has helped to sustain household spending which, in turn, has automatically fuelled economic growth. Any tightening is likely to hit personal cash availability which will certainly be a negative factor of the discretionary spend in the leisure industry.


This has been a litany of bureaucracy, frustration and, at times, mind-numbing procedural delays. It would seem that even the Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy Committee has now lost patience with Paul Newby, the Pubs Code Adjudicator. The Clerk to the BEISSC, Chris Shaw, has confirmed that the letter from Rachel Reeves MP, Chair of the BEISSC, has written to Paul Newby on 10th October and that that letter has been openly published on the BEISSC website which can be found at:-

Please see the full article on :-


This market overview has the semblance of doom and gloom not least concerning economic outlooks and the genuine slowing down, in evidential terms, of the discretionary leisure spend in our market. However, all is not so bad as it would seem if one simple objective is recognised. In our minds, that is called the presumption of reality. This means a degree of understanding and give-and-take between both landlord and tenant. It needs a reverse of the mind-set that at times still largely prevails which was once summed-up by a senior pubco employee in an off-the-cuff remark. You know what, tenants are all the same on the make, on the take and robbing us blind. We are a property company that happen to own pubs. They deserve all that they get.

We have a slightly softer view in that pubs can still thrive if the tenants are allowed to make a solid living. This must include having sensible rents and sensible discounting and, above all else, help and assistance if matters genuinely don’t turn out as either side financially expected. It is quite pointless having a financial rescue package in place for, say, six months and then taking away the help and assistance and going back to where things were. This and other related matters will be covered in subsequent newsletters.

And, finally, to lighten the mood a little, a couple of choice one-liners.

Whenever someone says I don’t believe in coincidences, I say my God, neither do I.

I have two boys five and six. We are no good at naming things in our house.”

Best Wishes from the Team at M & C


Phone: 01285 719292 and 01285 760370

20th October 2017.

Debt Management, reorganising your cash flow

Twinpier, Debt Management, reorganising your cash flow.

USE Twinpier

Twinpier are specialists in Debt Management.

If your business is starting to struggle and it is not a seasonal blip, contact Twinpier immediately.

They do not specialise in Bankruptcy, they specialise in avoiding bankruptcy and keeping your business afloat.

They know more about sorting out debts than any ordinary business person can possibly know, if you leave it or ignore it you become a failed statistic, it costs nothing to talk to them.

We sadly, have been dealing with too many business people that have ignored the warning signs and avoided help and come to us too late to rescue and one of the reasons that this web site was created.

Old Ten Pound Notes cease to be legal tender on 1st March 2018

If you would like to Advertise with us,

please click on the following:- Link

Old Ten Pound Notes cease to be legal tender on 1st March 2018

Posted: 14 Nov 2017 01:00 AM PST

Further to our September news article on the introduction of the new Ten pound notes the Bank of England has confirmed that the date at which the ‘old’ paper 10 pound notes will cease to be legal tender is 1st March 2018. Like with all the recent coin and note changes the old notes will still be able to be exchanged for the new polymer version at the Bank of England …