Labour MP Toby Perkins may well be simple, but that does not excuse his attempts to re-write history. The “Shadow Pubs Minister” has sent out a ham-fisted attack about the “great pub scandal”:
“Labour is forcing a Parliamentary debate on backing local pubs, pressing the Government to act as research shows 26 pubs are closing every week. Too many pubs across Britain are closing their doors and we urgently need action but ministers are dragging their feet. Pubs are vital hubs in communities up and down the country.”
Perkins, a renowned wally, has accused BIS of “dithering”. But lets just rewind a little…
The real “great pub scandal” was that Labour did more to hamstring the pub industry than any other government. At one point under Gordon, according to the BBC, 56 pubs were shutting a week. Then there were the former Chancellor’s crippling 60% rise in booze taxes, as well as the smoking ban destroying thousands of businesses. The ballooning in pub companies was a direct consequence of Brown’s tax relief for breweries introduced in 2002. Labour have some cheek in blaming Vince Cable for a problem they created. By all means highlight the concerns, but Perkins seems to have spent a little too long in the pub.