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CAMRA seeks reassurances following Brains pub closure announcement

Following the announcement that SA Brains & Co Ltd plans to sell off 40 of its pubs, CAMRA is seeking reassurances from Brains on what this means for staff and their local communities.

The family owned firm based in Cardiff currently has 160 pubs in its portfolio, meaning they plan to sell off a quarter of their estate.

The announcement was made on BBC Radio Wales by Brain’s chief executive Alistair Darby.

Brains has releaseda statement saying: “We have engaged with the team at Avison Young in Cardiff to sell these over the coming months.

“We have briefed all the teams in the selected pubs. The proceeds of these sales will enable us to both improve quality of the rest of our estate and to repay some of the facilities provided to us by our bank partners, HSBC and Lloyds.

“Regrettably, we will require fewer people to provide services to our pub estate once the sales are completed and so will reorganise our support centre to create a leaner and more agile business.”

Commenting on the decision by S.A. Brain & Co. Ltd to dispose of 40 of their pubs CAMRA National Chairman Nik Antona said:

“It is vital that these 40 Brains pubs are marketed as going concerns, so that different pub operators have a chance to take them on. Local communities and pub staff deserve rapid reassurances that everything will be done to secure the future of these pubs.

“CAMRA are also calling on the Welsh Government to urgently bring forward long-promised changes to planning laws to give communities a chance to save their local pub.

“Giving people a say through the planning system if their pub is being sold, converted into another use like housing or is facing demolition would give pubs better protections and a chance to thrive under new ownership.”