Scottish pub group slashes rent for tenants to survive lockdown

One of Scotland's biggest pub landlords has reduced rent for tenants by 90 per cent to help them survive the lockdown.

Belhaven Pub Partners, which leases around 120 outlets across Scotland, said it will reduce its rates for all tied pubs from 11 June until they can legally reopen.

The 90 per cent concession will remain in place for the first four weeks after reopening, before being reduced to 50 per cent relief for the four weeks after that.

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The move has been described as a multi-million pound investment.

Bellhaven Pub Partners has announced it will cut rent for tenants by 90 per cent while lockdown measures are in place

Managing director of Belhaven Pub Partners Wayne Shurvinton said businesses have to “stick together” to survive this difficult period.

Scotland’s roadmap out of lockdown, which was unveiled last week, could see pubs and restaurants open outdoor spaces from the end of June.

The four-step plan then envisages pubs and restaurants reopening their indoor spaces from around the middle of July, before a full reopening in early August.

The Belhaven move comes after the landlord launched a Partner Support Fund, which it said it has so far provided about £4 million of rent concessions.

Mr Shurvinton said: “From the outset balancing as much support for our tenants as we possibly could alongside ensuring the long-term survival of Belhaven has been our priority.

“By deferring rents before pubs were ordered to close, we removed any immediate cashflow concerns for our partners and since then have reassured them that we would support them in every way possible when it came to rent, and I’m very pleased to announce these latest measures.

“None of us are immune to the financial implications of pubs closing and we all have to work together to survive this existential threat to our industry.

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“I am grateful to every single one of our tenants who has worked with us and trusted that we were doing all we could to look after them.”

Well-known hostelries leased out by the group include the White Hart in Edinburgh, Molly Malones in St Andrews and the Ship Inn in North Berwick.

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