THE owner of a pub and club chain, which has various venues in Newquay, states none of its premises are at risk of closure despite a trade union issuing a warning.

Fears were raised that Sailors Arms and Sailors Club in Fore Street, Walkabout Newquay at The Crescent, Slug & Lettuce Newquay in Gover Lane and the Red Lion in North Quay Hill could have pulled their last pint after the GMB Union warned 418 Stonegate pubs face closure in the South West following “the company issuing a profit warning”.

But owner Stonegate states it has not issued a profit warning and says there has been significant improvement in its profitability. 

GMB alleges Stonegate says “there is no guarantee it can continue as a going concern, as it struggles to refinance a £2.2-billion debt mountain” despite private equity owner TDR’s assurances to a parliamentary select committee in January.

GMB has written to MP Lian Byrne, chair of the business and trade select committee, asking him to recall TDR bosses in light of the profit warning. 

Nadine Houghton, GMB national officer, said:  "TDR bosses are private equity gamblers playing fast and loose with people’s jobs and lives. When their risky ventures go wrong, they swan off to their next project, leaving workers and communities to pick up the pieces. 

“Now, hundreds of much-loved pubs across the South West are in serious danger of pulling their last pint. It’s a disgrace.” 

Stonegate is one of the largest pub companies in the UK, with more than 4,500 pubs and more than 19,000 workers, including brands like Slug and Lettuce, Yates and Walkabout. 

It owns several other venues in Cornwall including The Railway in Fore Street in Saltash, Grapes Inn in Church Street in Falmouth, The Carriers Inn at The Strand in Bude and The Bridge on Wool at The Platt in Wadebridge.

In response, a spokesperson for Stonegate, said: “We are really pleased with the performance of the business in 2023, which included a sector-leading Christmas trading period. We have delivered a rise in revenue and a significant increase in profitability. 

“We have been very clear that we continue to work towards achieving our long-term balance sheet goals, with the successful refinancing of a portion of our estate in December marking a significant strategic step towards this. 

“We would also like to assure our employees and partners that no venues are at risk as a result of this process.

“TDR Capital has been and continues to be a supportive investor in Stonegate, developing the business over the last fourteen years into the UK’s largest pub company with 4,500 great venues across the country.”