TWO of East Hendred’s three pubs are up for sale, and the landlords are blaming the owner Greene King’s high rent and beer prices.

The pub firm is looking for a new licensee to take over The Wheatsheaf Inn, while the lease of The Plough is being sold.

Wheatsheaf Inn landlord Adrian Combrink, 37, handed in his notice in March, but said only one potential tenant had looked around because Greene King was asking too much.

He said: “If this was such a great pub and it was worth it, it would be sold by now.

“Potential tenants couldn’t sustain the rent. Greene King are shooting themselves in the foot.

“And the only ones taking the knock are the people at the end of the line – myself and the punters because they are having to pay more for a pint.

“Profits are significantly down.”

When Mr Combrink took over the pub seven years ago the rent was £36,000 a year. It is now £45,000.

This includes a £7,500 extra fee to be able to buy wines and spirits from other companies.

Mr Combrink said he had to pay about £160 more than a freehold pub landlord for a barrel containing 36 gallons of beer.

He said: “The main reason why I am going is because the rent is too high.

“Trade has dwindled and we have hit recession. People don’t come out to drink.”

The Plough landlord Alan Valentine, who pays about £32,000 a year to Greene King, put the lease up for sale two months ago.

Mr Valentine, 62, said: “The beer prices are horrendous. You cannot live with it.

“I have been here for seven years and I would never think about taking another Greene King on or any pub confederation pub,” he added.

Neil Crook, chairman of the White Horse branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra), said: “Camra has been campaigning for reform of large pub companies and their business practices, because too many of the UK’s pubs are blighted by their actions.

Greene King spokesman Lucy Clegg said the firm did not discuss lease agreements.

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