BBPA campaign

Do you know the laws on serving drunks?

By Oli Gross

- Last updated on GMT

The BBPA has launched a campaign to highlight the laws around serving drunks
The BBPA has launched a campaign to highlight the laws around serving drunks

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The laws around serving drunks have been highlighted in a poster campaign launched by the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

The campaign features infographics showcasing a YouGov survey commissioned by the BBPA. Results show more than one in four people (27%) believe the statement ‘it is against the law in the UK to knowingly sell alcohol to someone who is drunk’ to be false, while 40% of people don’t know that it is against the law to buy alcohol for someone who is drunk.

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The reissued posters are available on the BBPA website and are working their way to pubs. They clearly state it is illegal to serve alcohol to a drunk person, or to buy alcohol on behalf of someone who is drunk, as per licensing law.

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The BBPA is working with National Pubwatch to produce a film around the issues raised in the posters, to be released later in the autumn. The BBPA is also partnered with Drinkaware in the campaign.

Last Friday (16 September), to coincide with the campaign launch, brewers, governments, NGOs and retailers in 76 countries around the world partnered on the second annual Global Beer Responsibility Day, a worldwide effort to promote the responsible consumption of beer.


Year-round industry-led schemes, including National Pubwatch, Best Bar None, Purple Flag, and Community Alcohol Partnerships, alongside the Challenge 21 initiative, are backed by pubs across the country, and all help ensure alcohol is sold and consumed responsibly.

Brigid Simmonds, BBPA chief executive, said: “Serving drunks has long been illegal, and in the vast majority of cases, pubs are safe and responsible venues where drinks are served in a highly supervised environment by well-trained staff.

“These posters are designed to help licensees, who can be put in a very difficult position and risk breaking the law if pressured to serve drunk customers. We need to make sure the public fully understands that these are offences, and our poster campaign, along with the new infographics, should help to raise awareness.”

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