Jun 11, 2021
Frasers and Boots frustrate landlords with hardball rent talks
Mike Ashley's retail chain Frasers Group and the chemist Boots are among a small group of tenants yet to strike a peace deal on unpaid rents, according to landlords. Polling by the British Property Federation showed a large majority of landlords and tenants had reached agreement on what to do about the roughly £6bn in rent debt built up during the pandemic. "Well-capitalised businesses continue to exploit the moratoriums and pay no rent at the expense of the local authorities, pensions and savings funds that own the high street. Government must take action now, when most businesses are open and trading, to end this scandal," said Melanie Leech, chief executive of the BPF. Well-capitalised businesses continue to exploit the moratoriums and pay no rent at the expense of the local authorities, pensions and savings funds that own the high street. Ministers have said they will lift bans on landlords evicting commercial tenants and pursuing them for unpaid rent accrued during the pandemic. Peter Bell, chief executive of the Commercial Tenants Association, said "There are a very small number of tenants not playing ball [and] the reality in practice is that landlords are not always sitting down with tenants either."
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