600 PUBS now listed as Assets of Community Value (ACV) in England but campaigners say more can be done to protect pubs across the country.
The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) launched a campaign to encourage local groups to register pubs as ACVs have announced that 600 pubs have now been listed.
But with 31 pubs closing every week and Government allowing pubs to be converted into supermarkets without planning permission, campaigners say there there’s still a significant amount to be done to support pubs.
According to CAMRA, two pubs are converted into supermarket convenience stores every week, a statistic that prompted the launch of its ‘Pubs Matter’ campaign, which asks the Government to ensure planning permission is granted before a pub can be used for different purposes.
“The Government introduced Assets of Community Value to help communities retain valued community assets such as pubs by providing an opportunity to bid for the property if the owner intends to sell. But the scheme is undermined by rules that allow pubs to be converted into supermarket convenience stores and a wide range of other retail uses, without any need for a planning application.” says Tom Stainer, CAMRA
Stainer continues: “Planning permission is required to convert a convenience store into a pub but no permission is required to convert a pub into a convenience store. The lack of protection for pubs is a glaring anomaly in the English planning system which needs to be corrected. It is surely not right that a supermarket convenience store is given greater planning protection than a valued community pub."