Running costs of a pub

Joined Jul 7, 2015
Greeting all.

I have seen a couple of abandoned pubs on industrial estates while on my travels as a lorry driver; that I think would make great truckstops.
But having no experience of running a pub I have very little concept of the running costs.
But on the good side when I left school at 15yo I was a commis chef for 2 years in a 2 rosette restaurant, so I have a basic understanding of how to cook.

As they are abandoned buildings in the middle of nowhere I can't see the lease being A high price.
I would estimate after a period of time I would get 100 sales a day (most from drivers parked up overnight outside) over 5 days a week and the average customer would spend £10 on his trip spent over food/ drink and a shower token.
I would estimate that me food and beverage costs would be 50% of my food and drink sales.

But I have no idea on my other running costs!
Council tax; water; gas; electric; refuse; TV license etc.    

I have even been told that they base your rates on the area of your premises.
I have asked a few of my local landlords what the crack is regarding running costs
But they all seam to be very reluctant on discussing this as if I'm going to set up business next door to them.


This is for England of the United Kingdom.


Joined Oct 11, 2014
Hello James, 

I would say that if you are very serious about opening a business then I would first recommend you to take some entrepreneurial course at a local school. This is by far the best investment one can bank on when it comes to any business. It will give you insight into commercial leasing, banking, setting up your business, leadership & management, etc. All extremely vital in the success of a business.

Check out:  take a browse through the hospitality and catering on this site so that you will see some of the great courses offered.

The other thing I would recommend is to look at taking your NOCN Level 1 & 2. This is a certificate in General Food and Beverage Service (QCF) that you will have to take in order to run a food & drink establishment.

You will want to go to the local council to get any info into the basic licenses, council tax, etc. They will give you most of the info you need to get an idea on costs. 

I hope some of this helps and let us know how you get on! Cheers /img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif  

PS: You will want to find out why the businesses are abandoned in the first place before investing money into them. If you think you are the only one who has thought of your type of business concept, odds are that someone else already tried it and might not have done well based on location or needs of that type of business. Saves you so much time, money and headache in the long run.
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