The Belgian Monk begins Brexit stockpiling ... again

PUBLISHED: 17:13 04 September 2019 | UPDATED: 08:40 05 September 2019

Terry Hughes, one of the partners at the Belgian Monk, has said the pub is stockpiling ahead of Brexit. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Terry Hughes, one of the partners at the Belgian Monk, has said the pub is stockpiling ahead of Brexit. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY


The owners of Norwich’s Belgian Monk are once again stockpiling beer and ingredients ahead of a potential no deal Brexit.

Belgian Monk bar in Pottergate, Norwich.
Photo: Bill SmithBelgian Monk bar in Pottergate, Norwich. Photo: Bill Smith

For the third time in two years, management at the pub have begun over-ordering supplies to mitigate any fallout from a departure from Europe on October 31 without a deal.

Plans are currently in place to order enough stock to last from October 31 through to January 2020.

Terry Hughes, one of the partners at the Pottergate pub, said: "It's a huge inconvenience. Over-ordering on beer and ale ties up a lot of our cash because we have to pay duty to the government as soon as it arrives, and then it sits idle in a warehouse. But for a small business, running out simply isn't an option."

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The watering hole offers Belgian delicacies which are difficult to track down at other pubs and suppliers across the UK.

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"Because we're such a niche experience it has made it more challenging for us," said Mr Hughes.

But given its success bosses don't want to change the offering of the pub.

"You have to take the view that if it isn't broken don't fix it, and the pub is clearly working as it is," Mr Hughes said. "And we're a Beglian offering so we're doing what we need to continue that."

With parliament seemingly in paralysis it remains unclear if the Uk actually will leave the EU on October 31 and Mr Hughes has his fingers crossed for a delay.

"From a business point of view I wouldn't mind a delay," he said. "It would give us more time to slowly build up our stocks instead of having to do it all in three months.

"On a personal note I don't want to leave the EU, and I don't know anyone who works directly with Europe that does.

"We talk to the UK border authorities on the financial side of things and have tried to find out what will happen if we leave without a deal. They don't know. They don't know what plan B looks like and all they can tell us is that they would start to wind down movement coming up to the deadline."

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