A PUB landlord is concerned about the future of his business, and others, following a rise in alcohol duty.

Pubs will pay 11 pence less duty than supermarkets on draught beer, but tax on wine and spirits will increase in line with inflation in August for both pubs and supermarkets.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt confirmed the plans today as part of the Budget.

Paul Baker, who runs The Crown, on Main Road, Wormingford, with his partner Sarah, welcomed the tax freeze on draught beer but said that the announcement is “another nail in the coffin”.

He added: “It seems like the government are trying very hard to put pubs out of business.

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“All of these costs have got to be absorbed by someone and you can’t necessarily always pass that on to the customers.”

The Crown, which is the only pub in Wormingford, has already suffered as a result of the cost-of-living crisis, which “has run a steam roller through the business”.

Mr Baker continued: “We have a very old population here in Wormingford with many residents living on fixed incomes. They can’t always afford to go out.

“It feels like a race to the bottom and as time goes on it’s going to get worse. It isn’t going to be fun over the next six to eight months.”