JD Wetherspoon pubs are showing support for national Tax Parity Day with a selection of outlets in North Devon dropping their prices for one day only.
Two pubs in Barnstaple and one in Bideford will reduce all food and drink prices by 7.5 per cent on September 25th to show the benefit of a VAT reduction to five per cent. Current regulation means that there is a 20 per cent VAT charge on food and drink in pubs while supermarkets benefit from a zero per cent rate. The chain is aiming to highlight what a difference could be made by reducing this levy.
North Devon Journal reported that The Panniers, in Boutport Street and The Water Gate in the The Stand, both in Barnstaple and The Rose Salterne, on Bridgeland Street, in Bideford, will all be participating in this action. The scheme has been supported by Alan Young, manager of The Panniers, who told the news provider that people will see a difference when it comes to their final bill.
He added: "We are keen to highlight the amount customers would save if VAT in pubs was lowered. So, for example, the total price of a meal and drinks for a customer at the pubs would be reduced from £10 to £9.25 on Tax Parity Day."
Pubs across the nation have been encouraged to take part in the campaign with Brains and Punch Taverns also lending its support to the action. In June, campaigner Jacques Borel called on more pubs and restaurants to stand up against the VAT rate that is imposed on the hospitality sector compared to supermarkets.
He explained that the industry should benefit from more equal tax treatment when it comes to serving food and drink. Mr Borel wants the current rate to be dropped from 20 per cent to five per cent to ensure that more pubs and restaurants can thrive in tough economic conditions.
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