It would be an exaggeration to say the pub trade has been restored to full health – but recently the numbers of pubs closing has slowed down.
The figures from the British Beer and pub association (BBPA) shows that 39 boozers are shutting each week. That’s down from 52 a week at the height of the recession. If that pace had been maintained the last pub in Britain would have closed in 2038.
The BBPA says 1013 pubs shut between July and December for a total of 2365 in the whole of last year.
The industry blames the economy, the smkoing ban, tax rises and cheap supermarket booze for its woes.
When you hear publicans like the Bricklayer’s Arms in Putney, London – CAMRA’s London pub of the year twice in threee years – voicing doubts on BBC News 24 about being able to continue to trade, you have to wonder if the Government understand that there are limits to how far they can tax the average drinker.
Ironically, given that the will no doubt use public health as an excuse for the rises, the last thing that the economy needs at present is for people to stop drinking.
Assuming that we can afford to drink it and can find somewhere to drink it, the popularity of real cider is definately growing.
Support your pub!