Published On: Thu, Jul 11th, 2024
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Sir Tim Martin commits to freezing Wetherspoon prices | Personal Finance | Finance


Wetherspoons supremo Sir Tim Martin has vowed to keep a lid on the prices of pub grub and pints for the rest of the year amidst the biting cost-of-living crisis. The titan of taverns announced his commitment to steady prices, pointing to decreasing costs in the industry and a dip in inflation as the driving forces behind this decision.

In an exclusive with The Sun, he declared his intention to implement a price freeze “for the rest of the calendar year”, expanding on his earlier promise which was limited to breakfast offerings. This comes on the heels of a robust 7.7% increase in like-for-like sales over the previous 10 weeks, even as the company shuttered 52 establishments.

The pub chain behemoth also boasted a 21% surge in sales per establishment when stacked against pre-COVID figures, further bolstering its position to maintain current pricing. Moreover, Wetherspoons is pouring an additional £164 million into staff wages in response to the rising living wage.

Sir Tim commented on the financial uptick: “The gradual recovery in sales and profits, following the pandemic, has continued in the current financial year. Total sales are, again, at record levels, with fewer pubs.

“Sales per pub are approximately 21% higher than pre-pandemic levels, which has helped to compensate for the very substantial increase in costs. For example, compared to the 2019 financial year, labour in this financial year has increased by approximately £164 million, energy by £28 million, repairs (also affected by labour costs) by £38 million and interest (excluding IFRS 16 interest) by £16 million.”

Pub giant Wetherspoon’s boss Sir Tim Martin has emphasised the firms recent investments, which include revamping staff areas, beer pouring systems, overhead glass racks, staff quarters, and improving beer gardens. He’s banking on the newly-appointed Chancellor Rachel Reeves to tackle the taxing issue of disparity between pubs and their retail counterparts.

He remarked: “The average Wetherspoon pub has generated taxes of one sort or another of £7 million in the last 10 years, as well as generating considerable employment and social benefits. The last government failed to implement tax equality between pubs and supermarkets, leading to pub closures and underinvestment.”

He further noted: “Wetherspoon hopes that the current Chancellor, with a Bank of England pedigree, will understand how many beans make five, and rectify this inequality.”



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