PENDLE MP Andrew Stephenson has welcomed moves from the Government to protect local publicans.

The Government is setting up an independent adjudicator to address unfair practices in the pub industry. Mr Stephenson said: “I believe there is increasing evidence that the beer tie, as operated by the large pub companies, plays a significant role in the decline of the pub trade.

“We have seen seven pubs close in Brierfield, five in Barnoldswick, seven in Nelson, three in Colne, and numerous others in the surrounding areas.

“I warmly welcome yesterday’s Government announcement, which will provide great support to those who have campaigned on the issue and give stability for pubs and tenants. It will be good for growth and the pub trade.”

Mr Stephenson also paid tribute to the Campaign for Real Ale and invited other MPs to join him at the Pendle Beer Festival, from January 31 until February 2, at the Municipal Hall in Colne.