Shropshire Star

Wetherspoon pubs to reduce prices for one day only to protest 'unfair' VAT charge

Wetherspoon pubs will cut the price of all food and drink by 7.5 per cent on Thursday, September 14 to highlight the benefit of a permanent VAT reduction in the hospitality industry.

Three Wetherspoon pubs in the Black Country will reduce their prices by 7.5 per cent on Thursday, September 14.

Prices at branches nationwide, including those in the Black Country, Staffordshire, and Worcestershire, will be reduced for one day only to mark Tax Equality Day.

For example, a customer spending £10 on food and drink would pay £9.25 on September 14.

All food and drink in pubs is subject to 20 per cent VAT, while supermarkets pay zero VAT on food, and can use that saving to sell alcohol to its customers at a discounted price, which a Wetherspoon manager has deemed "unfair".

The manager of The Moon Under Water in Cradley Heath, Nichola Holloway, said: "Customers coming to The Moon Under Water on Thursday, September 14 will find the price of their food and drink is lower than normal.

"It is unfair that supermarkets pay zero VAT on food, but pubs pay 20 per cent. Pubs have been under fantastic pressure for decades due to the tax disadvantages it has with supermarkets.

"The tax benefit allows supermarkets to subsidise the selling price of beer. It doesn't make sense for the hospitality industry to subsidise supermarkets. We urge the Chancellor to create tax equality between pubs and supermarkets."