What time do Brits start drinking on Christmas Day?

By Stuart Stone contact

- Last updated on GMT

Christmas spirits: its a pre-noon start for alcoholic drinking for most Brits on Christmas Day
Christmas spirits: its a pre-noon start for alcoholic drinking for most Brits on Christmas Day
A small batch craft gin firm from Bedale in Yorkshire has worked out when the average Brit breaks open the Christmas spirits on 25 December.

According to a survey of more than 2,000 consumers by craft gin producer Masons Yorkshire Gin, Brits are most likely to reach for their first alcoholic drink of Christmas day at 11.54am – with nearly a quarter of respondents (23%) getting festivities underway with a Prosecco, Champagne or Bucks Fizz.

Research found that the earliest Christmas Day drinkers are Londoners, with the average first sip of the day coming at 11.03am.

When can pubs open on Christmas Day?

According to Andy Grimsey, a partner at specialist licensing solicitors Poppleston Allen, there are no special licensing rules for pubs opening on Christmas Day.

“Many pubs don’t have Christmas Day mentioned explicitly on their licence and, therefore, the hours that apply will be those for the day of the week on which Christmas Day falls.

“As authorised Sunday hours are often slightly shorter than other nights of the week on many licences it is worth checking whether, when Christmas falls on a Sunday, longer hours are needed (not this year thankfully!)

 “Under the pre-2005 regime there were special rules for alcohol sales on Christmas Day, namely 12noon to 3pm and  7pm to 10.30pm. Some pubs may still have this restriction on their licence.

 “It all comes down to what the licence authorises, and it’s worth checking the conditions on the back of the licence as such restrictions are often ‘hidden’ there rather than on the face of the licence.

 “Any issues can usually be resolved either with a one-off temporary event notice (TEN) or, for a more permanent solution, a variation to the licence itself.

 “In Scotland the local licensing boards grant blanket seasonal variations, but only premises that have such seasonal variations included in their operating plan may benefit. Otherwise, licensees have to apply for a separate permission.”

Related topics: Spirits & Cocktails

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