Off Down the Pub on Saturday Night?

I used to be a regular bar fly in the village pub, but I moved away from Ruralshire to the suburbs a couple of years ago. The vibe is totally different, or rather non-existent, so I seldom venture out nowadays. I have missed the sit downs at my local curry house though. I hate to think how I'd have survived lockdown in my old environment. The pub was the hub.
Nah, things shift around, move around, you move around. You are just moving on, in a life of moving on.
Nothing stays the same. Good, isn’t it?
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
Not dashing out Sat but will venture out during week.

Landlord will be behind the bar, "Usual, not seen you for a while, what you been up to"

Me "not much"

Landlord, "Know the feeling"

With that I will sit down with my Old Rosie and rustle the paper.

Pete the Millionaire (He won a million scratch card, you would not know, flat cap and same clothes from the 50s) will then come in and have 2/3s of a pint of John Smith, no idea why, think he likes head. He has two of these whilst he reads the Daily Express and chooses his bets for the afternoon. He will sit opposite the table I am at, next door to the ladies loos, saves him walking around to the other side. We will be two meters away and discuss Brexit and the weather.

Another will come in, either the bloke who likes wedding cake, been married 4 times or the bloke who likes his woman with the bad back, hence being on the social for years. They sit in the booth around the large table and talk will expand to all local things, crime, fights, who is shagging who and what film to watch.

All ways some crap B&W film on the TV, no sound, its just on, its always a guessing game name and who is in it.

Maybe another one or two will pop in, no outsiders, no woman just the locals. Landlord will grumble about making no money, state of the country and his health.

Pints will be pulled, glasses will be dirty, peanuts out of date, just like the old days.

It will be like nothing has happened and nothing has changed.
Christ
it sounds like an Alan Bennet Stageplay
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
I had a look at two locals this weekend.

One opened the bar, and had a one-way policy. It kind've worked and people were left to sort themselves out in terms of what they were happy with in terms of social distancing. It was nice to have a pint and see some mates. We loitered in the garden and chatted at a reasonable distance.

The cost of a drink in a pub was a rude shock, though.

The other pub has opened its garden only. You can book a two-hour slot, and there's table service. What that means is that someone drifts past with a tablet, you order and pay, and drinks are delivered from the bar to a table outside in plastic glasses. You walk over to pick them up and go back to where you were sitting.

This is a community pub and I've helped over the last week to get the garden in order. I was showing a mate what we'd done (new patio, new pond). We were a good five metres or so from anyone else. One of the staff came over and ordered us back to our bench as we "couldn't just be wandering about".

Utterly sterile experience, with strict enforcement of no mixing between people who weren't from the same households and so no interaction with other people in the place (which is most of what going to a pub is all about). Nothing to make it appealing at all.

Pub prices, plastic glasses and no interaction - even at a respectful distance.

Nope. I'll sit in the garden. At home.
 
I nipped in to my local this lunchtime and was told I had to provide my name and phone number for a pint, I told them to ram it.

This is Nazi Germany all over again, but with worse lager.
 
I nipped in to my local this lunchtime and was told I had to provide my name and phone number for a pint, I told them to ram it.

This is Nazi Germany all over again, but with worse lager.
Oh I dunno. The Nazis has quite a few nasty lagers during their time.
I bet the bier/beer was nice though.
 
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I've often wondered about this claim. Is it supported by any data or is it more anecdotal and spread around by an industry disgruntled by a failing business model but and who are unwilling to share any blame for that failure?

From my own long experience of pubs as a punter, there were certainly places where the majority of patrons smoked. They were usually the less salubrious kind of spit and sawdust boozers where the window shutters were on the inside or else crowded live music venues.

The majority of pubs and bars did not fall into this category. A few of the patrons might smoke, but unless you go back to the 1950s, the majority did not. Smoking was a dying habit (in both senses of the word) for some considerable time. I know that there were an awful lot of people, especially women, who would not set foot inside a pub because they resented being assaulted by the permafug generated by others. Even when I was a smoker myself, I found such an atmosphere unpleasant.

Presumably, a considerable number of these non-smokers were encouraged to start going to pubs once the smoking ban had been introduced.

In any case, the decline started many years before any smoking ban. Look at any old map and count the pubs that existed in any high street or village in, say, the 1940s. Compare that situation with the one in the1980s.

No, I think the industry needs to look elsewhere for the slump in business.
In my view, pubs are failing because the breweries refuse to compete with the supermarkets. Rather than try and set prices to attract people into their pubs, they simply raise prices and expect the public to continue to use them.

So the breweries have made pubs unsustainable. Up until around twenty years ago, running a pub was a license to print money. Now it’s a touch and go business where most pubs earn their landlords a living and little more than that and that’s if they are lucky.

Of course pubs won’t sell beer at supermarket prices. They simply can’t but they could pile it high and sell it cheap. People still want the pub ambiance if it’s affordable. There is one pub in my town that is thriving. It sells lager for as cheap as two pounds and twenty pence a pint.

The current crises excepted, that pub is consistently busy from when it opens until when it closes every day seven days a week. That price is for it’s cheapest lager. It sells others for more money but none of it‘s beers cost much over the three quid mark. It’s making very healthy and consistent returns on it’s business model.

Walk into any pub that sells it’s beer for over four pounds plus and I’ll bet you will often find an empty pub or just a couple of punters nursing their expensive product while they watch the world limp by. Even in what are usually peak periods for pubs like a Saturday evening, pubs with expensive beer can be sparsely populated. A busy night is the exception rather than the norm.

Many breweries probably make their money more from punitive leases than they do from competitive pricing to help sell beer. As such, the level at where a pub becomes an unsustainable business is set very low because no matter how hard a landlord tries to make a success of his pub, he see’s any success by his hard work sucked up by the leaseholder.

So from a sustainable business point of view, it simply doesn’t matter whether you can smoke in a pub or you can’t. If you are charging top dollar for a product that relies on repeated business in a world where that product is widely available at a substantially less cost elsewhere, you are not going to survive.

Take Fuller’s brewery for example. A London based brewery producing and selling some well renowned award winning real ale beers. London Pride, ESB and Chiswick etc. It’s beer is up there with anything that anybody else has to offer. Some beer drinkers worship Fuller’s pubs because of London Pride etc.

Except Fuller’s is no longer a brewery. One of the leading iconic London beer brewers has flogged its entire brewery off to a Japanese company and has turned itself into a hotel chain. Investment over many years in hotel properties gave Fuller’s that option.

Fullers is a good example of your point about looking elsewhere but how many other breweries have the right kind of property portfolio to allow them to follow suite?

Breweries have been either fooling themselves or trying to mislead the public for years that they are competitive when in fact, they’ve been ripping off their customers and ignoring the reality of so many pubs being unable to survive and closing because they can’t get customers through their doors because of their flawed pricing strategy.

Breweries have caused the decimation of their own industry. There should be a beer called kamikaze and it should be on sale in all of their pubs. They did it to themselves!
 
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Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
Walk into any pub that sells it’s beer for over four pounds plus and I’ll bet you will often find an empty pub or just a couple of punters nursing their expensive product while they watch the world limp by. Even in what are usually peak periods for pubs like a Saturday evening, pubs with expensive beer can be sparsely populated. A busy night is the exception rather than the norm.
You must live in an impoverished area filled with Wetherspoons and other Chav pub chains. Where I live, there are 4 pubs, 2 which sell craft beer and the like, 1 is a Spoons and the other is an ex Youngs pub, now an independent whose prices fall between Spoons and the other 2, all have a steady trade throughout the week and it's not that affluent an area either (Catford). Plus there are a couple of "Lounges" that cater for our more exotic brethren as well that only open at weekends that are also busy too.
 
You must live in an impoverished area filled with Wetherspoons and other Chav pub chains. Where I live, there are 4 pubs, 2 which sell craft beer and the like, 1 is a Spoons and the other is an ex Youngs pub, now an independent whose prices fall between Spoons and the other 2, all have a steady trade throughout the week and it's not that affluent an area either (Catford). Plus there are a couple of "Lounges" that cater for our more exotic brethren as well that only open at weekends that are also busy too.
I live on the periphery of West London. We have everything around here. I don’t get out anywhere near as often as I used to because of current health issues but I was a regular for many years at what used to be considered one of Fuller’s premier real ale pubs in the area.

I also occasionally pop into a Greene King pub which is much more down market but my brother drinks in it because it’s not far from where he lives and it’s cheap. It’s still not a bad little boozer even if it sets it’s sights lower than the Fullers gaffe.

I’m within roughly 15 minutes of five Wetherspoons pubs in Hayes, Uxbridge and Ickenham and there are numerous other pubs still around the place. Some of them are fantastic pubs set in both Suburban settings and also out in the countryside. The benefits of living right on the edge of London. The area is also littered with sites where pubs existed and have been knocked down and flats built or converted to supermarkets etc.

But pub wise, we still have everything around here. We are actually in my opinion spoilt for choice which in some area’s would likely be considered a miracle. It sounds like Catford is in that position.

I used to visit Dagenham quite often where my son lived with his partner and their daughter. Every pub around there looked like a doss house selling alcohol. Thank god they moved to Ringwood!
 
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I nipped in to my local this lunchtime and was told I had to provide my name and phone number for a pint, I told them to ram it.

This is Nazi Germany all over again, but with worse lager.
Are there any long-term vacant properties in your area? That's your address. Had any unsolicited PPI calls? That's your number.
 
Are there any long-term vacant properties in your area? That's your address. Had any unsolicited PPI calls? That's your number.
Or let the spirit of Douglas Adams live on and give the number of Hotblack Desiato
 
Just use mine:

Buckfast Felize
15 The Goebbels
Oswald Moseley Gardens
Skirmley-on-Scum
Oxbridge

Tel: 0898 696969

I'm now off OUT for a curry. Fuck yeah!
 
Nah, things shift around, move around, you move around. You are just moving on, in a life of moving on.
Nothing stays the same. Good, isn’t it?
Whilst I want my Pub back, and pretty much in its original form, a lot has been relearned from this filthy Chinese Plague period.

And enjoyed.
I am overflowing with salad and veg stuff, just put 19 ltr of elderflower wine into a carboy thing, made some beer, eaten very well, enjoyed the fresh air, peace and quiet, lack of politics.

All of this - no thanks to China.
 
Here in France the lockdown was taken far more seriously by very professional law-enforcement, 92000 fines (of €135 payable on the spot) in the first week.
That tends to keep you indoors, bistros are now open at last but after three months people are still wary of going out.
Luckily there is a rehab course available on the French NHS to get us all back to some sort of normality and get some semblance of confidence back for the more timid of us.
(Not me)
I commend this to the house.

 

Sexton Blake

Old-Salt
I was cracking one one out to the blonde bit who looks a dirty scutter, old boy threw my stroke a bit and I had to change my mindset for the pisshead but happy to say the dwarf entering the scene gave my greatest release ever.
Perhaps you would like to try cracking one out to this blonde minx? Unless of course she is actually an Arrser herself?

 

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