Tim Martin, boss of JD Wetherspoon, wants to become an MP as part of his battle against the government's proposals for licensing reform.

Martin says he wants to form a new political party, Action Against Control Freaks, and is urging pub and bar licensees and managers to sign up for it.

He said that although the next general election may be four years away, and a new Licensing Act already passed, "I think it's most unlikely the new system it brings in will be up and running. If we're elected to Parliament we can stop it in its tracks.

Meanwhile Kim Howells, the minister in charge of licensing at the department of Culture, media and Sport, is being pressured by organisations such as the ALMR to ensure that 150,000 licensed premises do not all have to apply for a new premises licence as soon as the Licensing Bill is passed.