UKHospitality, the BBPA and the British Institute of Innkeeping have joined forces to call on the government to overturn the “completely unnecessary” late-night levy.
Despite venues being required to close at 10pm while open, the tax was in place across much of London and large cities such as Newcastle and Liverpool, with local authorities powerless to overturn the legislation.
“With businesses mandated to close at 10pm and with many late-night premises still unable to re-open at all, there is no way the late-night levy is justified,” said spokesperson for UKH, the BBPA and BII said. “A tax that was spurious at the best of times, is completely unnecessary and potentially very harmful in the midst of this crisis.”
“This has been acknowledged by some local authorities and we have had pragmatic discussions about how late-night hospitality and pubs can be supported. Unfortunately, as the powers are set under national legislation, late-night levy payments cannot be frozen or cancelled.”
The hospitality trade bodies wrote to Crime and Policing Minister Kit Malthouse MP in order to request permission to overturn the levy and recoup the tax already paid for the venues, stating “we need the Government to act on this issue as a matter of urgency.”