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Government support spells success for daily’s pub campaign

A regional daily is celebrating success in its campaign to help protect pubs on its patch.

As part of its Be Vocal For Your Local drive, The Press, York, has been pushing for the government to close a loophole which allows companies to turn pubs into convenience stores, bookmakers or estate agents without planning permission.

Now the government has announced it will support a measure to close a planning loophole to force developers to go through planning committees and give drinkers a chance to have their say.

Press senior reporter Alex Ross, who spearheaded the campaign, described the news as a “great result”, with the newspaper splashing on the success on Saturday.

York pubs

He told HTFP: “People who see their pub as the centre of their community now have the chance to have a say on its future and stop it from being turned into something they don’t want or need.

“The campaign helped to save at least two pubs while it was running and brought the planning loophole issue into the spotlight and made regulars aware of the dangers facing their pubs.

“We felt it wasn’t fair locals were not being given a chance to have their say on something close to them and set out to do something about it.

“This is The Press’ second campaign victory in six months where we have successfully lobbied government on a local and national level.

“This only goes to prove the important role local newspapers still play in society. At a time when many people are eager to tell anyone listening how local newspapers are finished, the changes we have made show the power of a newspaper campaign and the significant impact they can have on legislation and ultimately people’s lives in the country.”