A year of key policy wins and the admission of major new retailer members has rounded off a very successful 12 months for the ALMR.
Speaking at today’s ALMR Spring Conference in London, ALMR Chief Executive Kate Nicholls highlighted the success of the Association’s lobbying and its expansion to cement its reputation as the premier voice for UK licensed hospitality.
Nicholls said: “The past twelve months have been a period of fantastic progress for the ALMR as we look to cement ourselves as the leading voice for all of licensed hospitality. We have been hard at work with our primary aim which is to fight for a fairer, more flexible deal for pubs and bars and we have seen some significant gains.
“The ALMR has been at the forefront of the campaign to reform business rates and this year we have seen the Government take notice, saving an average of £600 per pub. We have successfully campaigned for cuts to National Insurance Contributions, new planning guidance for live music venues and successfully pushed back on EU proposals for menu labelling, restaurant charges and licensing restrictions.
“Our work over the past year has saved the industry in the region of £184m and we are in a strong position to achieve even more. We continue to press for a free, fair and flexible market to allow our members’ businesses to achieve their full potential.
“Our agenda for the coming year includes jobs taxes – including changes to the living wage and apprenticeship levy – commercial rents and rates and tackling the barriers to improved productivity. With an ever increasing and disproportionate tax burden, the positive growth the sector has achieved over recent years could be threatened and we need a stable and supportive regulatory environment to sustain investment. In addition, we will be acting as the voice of the operator with the London Night Time Commission, in Europe and on a number of Task Forces.
“We have seen a number of high profile businesses join including: Bill’s, Maxwell’s and Pizza Hut Restaurants and we are in great shape to continue our expansion. This has been a very successful twelve months for the ALMR and we are looking forward to working with our members to achieve even more.”