Novelist. Author of APSARAS and tales from the beautiful Saigh Valley. First person to quantify spiritual values.

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Wednesday 28 July 2010

24 hour drinking Licenses

It is reported that the Government is minded to change the policy on allowing 24 hour drink licenses, reversing a trend introduced by the last Labour administration. The hope they had of introducing a 'Cafe' style culture in the UK hasn't worked as youngsters continue to drink in the way they always have; hard.

I believe that extended licenses have always been around. Night Clubs, for instance, have been able to stay open into the early hours and I don't suppose this will change. Many licensees never took advantage of the new licenses because their customers, usually working folk, didn't want to be out all night, so the revoking of this legislation will not be so important as would first seem. With one exception. Most of the pubs that would be affected are brewery owned managed bars. Their sole aim is to sell beer and lots of it. Managers are under instructions to meet tough sales targets, which give rise to to some of the main problems associated with drink.

Managers encourage excessive drinking with 'Happy hours' and other offers.
They routinely serve drunks, contrary to the law.

The atmosphere in these bars is largely aimed at the young end of the market often giving rise to testosterone fuelled trouble. Social drinking has given way to social bingeing. It is seen as cool to be 'wasted'. I would like to see more 'role models' disabusing the vulnerable young of this notion. I would like to hear people saying that it is 'unattractive' and anti-sociable to be inebriated. Why not a double move of removing twenty-four hour drinking and the vilification of drinking to excess.

I believe, having worked in the trade for over twenty-five years, that clipping the wings of these mega bars must have a beneficial effect on the trade as a whole as would a return to more tenancies at realistic rents.

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