Ministers are under renewed pressure to introduce new laws to restrict the beer tie after an MP’s Bill to force changes received cross party support. That’s according to Liberal Democrat MP Martin Horwood, whose Tied Public Houses (Codes of Practice) Bill is now set for a full debate in the House of Commons on 10 June after MPs approved it today. The Bill wants a statutory code of practice introduced forcing pubcos of more than 500 sites to give tenants a free-of-tie option, combined with an open-market rent review. Tied lessees must also be offered a guest beer option. Horwood told M&C Report: “It was very noticeable that the Bill managed to get support from six parties. Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat members supported me, as well as Scottish Nationalist and Plaid Cymru MPs, and the sole Green. “It was not opposed by any MP across the chamber and went through with unanimous support. “We have demonstrated clear support for tackling the issue of the tie than in a more robust way. I think it adds to the pressure on ministers to act themselves.” In Parliament today, Horwood flagged up early results of a survey by the Federation of Small Businesses that found 91% of its tied tenant members believe the tie prevents them from making a “fair profit”. The Business, Innovation & Skills Committee (BISC) set a June 2011 deadline, which has been endorsed by the Government, for the industry to prove that reform has worked. Horwood revealed: “I’ve already talked to [business minister] Ed Davey informally, and clearly at the moment ministers are still hoping that self regulation will do. “But the select committee did set this deadline and unless we see some improvement, this will become a very important debate about whether legislation is required.” Horwood said the “odds are against’ his Bill becoming law. It’s a so-called 10 minute rule bill, and the last time one of these made it to the statute books was back in 2002. But he pointed to the cross party support and said: “It is possible.” Horwood said he’s been aware issues around the tie in his Cheltenham constituency. “One of the neighbourhoods in Cheltenham has lost all its locals. I’ve had publicans come to talk to me about the tie saying it’s damaging their business and they don’t really see the advantage of it any more.” Although 10 June has been allocated for the Commons debate on the Bill, Horwood said it may be pushed back depending on the Parliamentary timetable.