A PUB owner says punters are unlikely to see a reduction in the price of a pint, following the Chancellor's budget last week.

The Government say alcohol duty has been 'radically' simplified by introducing a system designed around the principle of 'the stronger the drink, the higher the rate'.

A 'draught relief' will apply a lower rate of duty on draught beer and cider, cutting the tax by 5 per cent on drinks served from draught containers over 40 litres and bringing the price of a pint down by 3p.

However, Martin Barnes, of the Uphouse Pub Group who own the Antrobus Arms near Northwich and the George & Dragon in Holmes Chapel said any cuts would likely get soaked up by an increase in associated costs.

He said: "I do believe that there has been an acknowledgement of the value of the hospitality sector to the Treasury.

"As one of the biggest employers nationwide, the value is enormous to the public purse.

"The biggest help is the temporary relief on Business Rates, for us it will enable us to invest in our pubs and our people.

"However, it is only for one year - along with the rest of the sector we feel there needs to be reform in how business rates are applied. It’s been talked about for a while and is long overdue.

"The cut in beer duty is a great headline catcher for the Treasury, but in real terms for the operators of pubs, bars and restaurants the impact is minimal.

"I don’t believe that customers will see a reduction in prices.

"This will get soaked up by the increased associated costs.

"Wages, fuel and energy costs will impact the cost price of our goods coming in.

"Let alone our own wages and energy costs.

"This fundamentally means the cost has to get passed on."

Martin went on to say how he hopes careers in the industry can be promoted, rather than being viewed as unskilled jobs.

"There aren’t many careers where you can start as ‘entry-level’ with no qualifications and work your way up to running businesses in an extremely short period of time.

"The skillset as a chef or waiting-on can be taken anywhere in the world too.

"Hospitality is an agile industry and will no doubt find its way to thrive again.

"All in all, we have to see it as a glass half full."