ALMR launches manifesto to support late-night economy

Pryzm Bristol queue

The Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) has launched a “Late Night Manifesto” outlining the key priorities for policy makers after May’s general election.

It is calling on an incoming Government and local authorities across the UK to engage in partnership with the late-night sector, recognise industry participation in high-street regeneration and amend guidance to support continued success in the late-night economy.

The manifesto outlines specific policy initiatives to foster partnership, reduce over-regulation and sustain investment in diversity and vibrancy.

It calls for a new definition of “alcohol-related crime” based on statistics that take account of capacity and visitor numbers to differentiate between genuinely alcohol-related and other volume crimes.

It also advises restraint on requiring venues to breathalyse customers, conceding that they have a role to play in deterring drunkenness but in the context of policing a town centre, not in a hospitality setting.

If problems exist at a particular venue, the ALMR calls for a more sensible approach and would investigate voluntary, partnership and data-sharing schemes in the first instance.

It urges amendments to national guidance to require local authorities to work through partnership and voluntary schemes before introducing punitive measures such as early-morning restriction orders (EMROs) and late-night levies.

It also calls for reform of permitted development rights to promote investment and ensure nightclubs can operate with a degree of security.

The ALMR also highlights how it is working to secure a fair market for music users, negotiating tariff charges with rights bodies PRS and PPL.

ALMR chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “The UK’s late-night economy is one of the most exciting, innovative and valuable in the world. The sector is a hotbed of creativity, nurturing some of the country’s best young entrepreneurial and musical talent, reenergising town centres and contributing enormously to local economies.

“Around £66billion in revenue is generated every year by the late-night economy, employing 1.3million people and accounting for 10% of GDP. Over half a billion visits are made to UK nightclubs each year, including over 300million dedicated visits and nearly £18billion spend.

“We should rightly be very proud of this enormous success and there is an opportunity to improve on this and ensure that the sector cements its reputation as one of the best in the world, while delivering continued growth and additional jobs.

“The ALMR is therefore launching its Late Night Manifesto and calling on both national and local authorities to work with both the ALMR and the wider late-night sector to foster further improvement and encourage positive perceptions of the industry.”

Pictured: The Luminar Group’s Pryzm nightclub in Bristol.

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