'Pub group collapses double in first three months of 2010'

Related tags Labour party Drink Alcoholic beverage

The number of bar and pub firms going out of business in the first three months of the year was more than double the number in the same period last...

The number of bar and pub firms going out of business in the first three months of the year was more than double the number in the same period last year, as the trade struggled to compete with cheap alcohol sales in supermarkets. The latest figures for the pub and club sector must act as a wake-up call to ministers about the dire state of the industry, said Anthony Cork, a director of the accountants, Wilkins Kennedy, which produced the statistics. The drinks sector is pleading with the government not to make the situation worse by imposing further duty increases in the June 22 emergency budget, a move it says could "tax it out of existence". - Observer

Coalition ministers are studying proposals to cut the drink-drive limit for the first time in a generation. Under the plans, the limit would fall from 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood to 50mg. Anyone caught above the new limit would face an automatic 12-month driving ban, even if they were only marginally over the threshold. Other proposals include random breath testing, giving the police the right to stop motorists at any time, and lifetime bans for high risk offenders. Up to 168 lives could be saved every year if the limit was to be cut, suggest supporters of the move. - Daily Telegraph

A government quango has urged football fans to choose sparkling water and grapes rather than beer and crisps while watching the World Cup. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has issued four pages of advice on how to make "healthier choices ... while you're feasting on the footie". It suggests fans "walk to the pub instead of taking the bus" or "use half-time for a brisk walk and some fresh air". The guidance, which comes as the future of the agency is thrown in doubt by looming public sector cuts, has been dismissed by the TaxPayers' Alliance as "drivel". - Sunday Telegraph

Britain has the highest rates of teenage drinking in the developed world. The costs to the NHS run to £2bn a year. The reason is that booze is cheap and available. There's an inescapable economic logic that if you raise the price of drink, people will drink less…Some in the medical establishment view alcohol as the next great public health issue after cigarettes. Taxes, bans and public information campaigns may have worked with smoking but these may not be enough to change how drinking is viewed. Drinkers are assailed every day by messages from companies telling them that drinking is fun. Peer pressure is likely to have more impact on teenagers than any amount of finger-wagging from ministers. - Randeep Ramesh, writing in the Observer

It is surely unfair that modest but hard-up drinkers should be penalised for the surge in bingeing for which the Labour government, cheap alcohol and the strategems of a cunning, over-indulged drinks industry are widely thought to be responsible. Without, say, 24-hour licences, happy hours and vertical drinking, how would those staggering, semi-dressed girls whose fate now obsesses the Daily Mail​ ever have discovered that they shared this interest with the late Queen Mother? - Catharine Bennett, writing in the Observer

A pub chain has apologised after a gay group said staff refused to serve them in a row over their sexuality. The Labour Party's Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transsexual Society were in the Greencoat Boy pub in Westminster, central London, when a row broke out. The duty manager is alleged to have refused them service and said that had he known they were a gay group he would not have accepted their booking. Punch Taverns, which owns the pub, said it had launched an investigation. - BBC News Online

Related topics Other operators

Property of the week


£ 60,000 - Leasehold

Busy location on coastal main road Extensively renovated detached public house Five trade areas (100)  Sizeable refurbished 4-5 bedroom accommodation Newly created beer garden (125) Established and popular business...

Follow us

Pub Trade Guides

View more