The majority of publicans will receive a major shock when their new business rates demands arrive in the next couple of weeks. That’s the view of Ian Sloan, of Oxfordshire chartered surveyors Bankier Sloan.

Most pubs have benefited from the retail rates relief scheme over the last two years, a scheme brought in to help re-generate town centres and assist pubs.

But Mr Sloan points out that Chancellor George Osborne did not announce the renewal of this scheme in his autumn statement in November, and as a result almost all independent pubs will see their rates bill rise from 1st April by just over £1,500 per year.

Mr Sloan said: “Publicans with rateable values above just £8,250 will see the substantial increase. Whilst the basic rate in the pound has only increased by 0.8%, the abandonment of the retail relief scheme will come as a major blow and shock to many businesses.”

Small business rates relief, which is a self-funding scheme according to Mr Sloan, will remain in place and is available to any business, not just publicans, with rateable values under £12,000.

A chartered surveyor who has promoted the SBRR scheme across the country over the last few years, Mr Sloan is keen to insure small businesses receive all the reliefs available and warns businesses not to rely on information found on many council websites.