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Monday, 17 December 2012

Minimum price for alcohol.

My son drove down to spend the Christmas period with us yesterday.

Against my better judgement, himself and Mrs TFE decided we should nip out to the pub for a drink or two. (TFE, never one to allow drink to escape his lips) I had to reluctantly agree to accompany them.

I have known that for some time that there has been such a thing as a beer duty escalator, but when I bought the first (and only) round, I realised that the pub had found some way of engineering the escalator to approach the speed of light.

I’d ordered two pints of bitter and a glass of Pinot Grigio and pulled out a tenner from my wallet, (The moths had left it alone thank God) and expected the damage to be around the £8 mark.

FFS, you could have knocked me down with a packet of pork scratchings. The till rang up £13.30 (They don’t actually ring up these days, just have a smug smirk).

I know that publicans have been hit by the smoking ban, but surely they’re not going to attract customers in, for that sort of price.

We just had the one drink and left. So Mr Publican, I can get absolutely bladdered on decent whisky at home for the same price. Why do I need you? Your business model is I think, fatally flawed.

Times are hard, therefore customers will adjust their drinking habits to suit.

PS. What about a smoking shelter?


  1. Couldn't agree more, FE! Was at a wedding on Saturday and bought Dear Lady Wife a white wine spritzer and self an apple juice, £8.50, collapsed on floor and had to be resuscitated by paramedics. That's a weeks grocery money for us.
    Not being much of a boozer, this was my first time in pub since two weeks before our eldest was born, thirty two years ago. Prices have gone up a bit haven't they!!!

  2. Well bugger me with a stick Mr Engineer. And I thought the prices for drinks were high in New Zealand. I have been away from the fair Isle that is England too long. Although it has to be said that the Kiwis are a frugal lot and do most their boozing at home.

  3. I have no sympathy for publicans and their stupid business-wrecking games. You would think that since the smoking ban they would be doing everything possible to encourage trade, but no.

    I haven't been in my local pub (Paddock Wood, 7 miles from you) for over three years now, since they refused to serve me for the second time in two years... Some twaddle about a 'ladies night', no men allowed (except, apparently, for another two regulars who were hiding around a corner). Decided then and there that if they didn't want my money then so be it, there won't be a third time. I've now got a 'fridge full of beer at home. Fuck 'em...

  4. And here within lies the problem - no matter whether the smoking ban is ever repealed or amended, the pubcos and tits at westmonster have put the prices up so much, even the smokers won't save the pub trade anymore.

    I'm just glad I got out of the trade when I did, I could see which way the wind was blowing!

  5. I'll just carry on drinking at home. Cheaper, & more comfortable.

  6. £13.30!, I know I live in the frozen north, but even hotel prices in Newcastle would not approach that! Say, £3 per pint and another £3 for the wine, like you I would have expected change from a tenner. Until you we're drinking some of the modern fancy foreign lagers?, surely not TFE.

  7. I wouldn't expect to pay anything like that in a pub in Huddersfield, My local is not the cheapest but a pint of Golden Pippin is about £3.20 with the wine at about £3.75, so even then no change from a tenner.
    To be honest in most cases its not the landlords fault the pubcos call the shots and the licensee has to put up with it. My landlord has to pay out about £5K a year for the privilege of buying in his own bottled beer. He sells a bottle of Hobgoblin or Bishops Finger for £2.60, about £1.85 in Sainsbury?? I don't begrudge the markup at all because its almost a pint and its over 5.2% and I get the chat of the pub.
    Golden Pippin? I used to work with the head brewer at another brewery.


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