West End businesses are facing a whopping rise in business rates of £50,000 each this year, City A.M. can reveal.
Shops, restaurants and hotels in the heart of London's shopping and entertainment district are in for bigger bills as the second increase following last year's rerating kicks in according to Altus Group.
The average business rates rise is around £50,000 for the area, with more than 1,000 businesses experiencing tax rises of more than the three per cent inflation rate.
Large shops face some of the biggest increases, with an average additional bill of £52,381, while hotels will need to pay around £53,900 extra.
It is thought that 155 large restaurants in the West End are in for average business rates rises of £24,811, heaping more trouble onto the plate of operators already struggling with rising costs and tough competition.
It was revealed prior to its administration and closure that business rates on Jamie Oliver's Barbecoa in Piccadilly hit £530,000 last year, with this set to rise to £625,000 this year.
“Business rates are unfair, unreflective of commercial realism and ineffective as a way of paying for much needed local services," commented Sir Peter Rogers, chairman of New West End Company which represents over 600 businesses in the West End
“As we move into a post-Brexit period we need to look radically at how we tax businesses locally so that they are encouraged to grow, compete fairly and provide the funding that local authorities desperately need”.
The new about business rates follows a report released yesterday by Local Data Company (LDC) and PwC, which showed that new high street openings are at their lowest rate in seven years.
An average of 11 stores opened on the British high street every day in 2017, while there were 16 daily closures.