What's happening to our pubs?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by seafarer1939, Oct 23, 2009.

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  1. Just wondering if the British pub, as a place of friendly banter is dying.
    Last week on the way home I stopped in Alnwick[lovely castle town steeped in history] dropped in a pub I used to use a lot looking for some friendly banter.
    Now I'm great believer in the addage of"Tell what you know and learn what you don't"and I've had many a long bar conversation with people on subjects that I haven't the faintest clue about.
    Sat at the bar,5 others sat there,one one mortally drunk,good luck to him!the other 4 were all on mobiles for the whole 20 mins I was there!
    To cap it all my pet hate happened next,two couples arrived, in their thirties,men stood at the bar and waited until their wives opened up their purses and gave them the cash to get some drinks!
    what's going on?have we lost all our great pub debates?I hope not, that's not the way I remember that pub,you could always have a laugh and natter.
    Hope your local hasn't gone the same way, at least my local is still on top form most nights.
    Come to think of it, maybe they saw me driving up and did a runner!seems about right!
  2. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    Most pubs in the UK have sadly turned into "gastro pubs". The true drinking man pub is dying out. Nowt wrong with a pub selling decent beer and snacks with cheese rolls and a hot cabinet with pies in, except they dont take enough money to survive.
  3. Totally understand you Seafarer!

    Coming from the Northeast, I still remember (not that long ago) when you could walk into any pub and total strangers would talk to you, even if you were both talking a load of sh*te, and you'd go home thinking "I had a good night".

    Now, most pubs are plastic drinking holes for people to get totally w*nkered before they get a taxi into town.

    Luckily we have a decent local where you can have a good drink and a natter - and the landlord has heaters and brollies outside for the smokers!

  4. Think the last decent boozer I stepped into (fell thru the door into more like) has to have been 'Yorkies' old place, 'The Cannon' a fine establishment located in that sewer known as Brompton, next door to Chatham.

    'Yorkie' is sadly no more. But I believe his boss Pauline is still running the place.
  5. seafarer - im from newcastle but havent been to that pub. i believe whats knacked the bars is the no smoking ban(im not a smoker by the way)
  6. With you on that one - where are all these people that were going to flock to the pubs when they were made non-smoking ? Haven't seen it in my local, just a lot of people standing in the doorway having a fag. Chuck in the exorbitant (to me) prices, and you can see why people don't go out much these days. Gone are the days of Sunday dinnertime SKY football - £2.60 a pint, or stay at home, pay £2.70 for 4 litres of decent cider, smoke as much as I like, rant and rave at the ref without upsetting anyone, or fall over somebodys rugrats. Do miss the craic though, but money is money.
  7. Should have travelled a bit further and went to Ashington
  8. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Apart from a few, a lot of pubs in London have lost the atmosphere they used to have. The ones you go into now always seem to have the telly on, killing the art of conversation. They are overpriced as well. I rarely go into pubs now and do the majority of my drinking down the RNA club. At least you can have a crack there.
  9. I don't think the Smoking Ban is to blame for the demise of our local pub, local pubs were closing at a fast rate of knots before the smoking ban came in. IMHO the main culprit is cheap supermarket beer sales and extended opening of these supermarkets. Like you said why pay the pub prices when you can get a slab for under a tenner, sit in your own living room with your choice of what sports channel to watch at the volume you like and hurl all the abuse you want to at the match officials with out offending Joe Public!
  10. Over here in da Republic[he just shut early Burp! 3.30] we have talk the amount you drink is being lowered to if you have one pint you are pissed.

    For Sale many Irish pubs and the economy takes a nose dive once again.
  11. Sign of the times :cry: It all started when they allowed women in the public bar, introduced lager or even worse Fosters........then the drink driving laws......there was only one white line if you closed one eye :lol:
  12. Had the pleasure of living right next to a proper boozer, the Queens Hotel, in Gosport for many years. Was back in there last month for an extended Saturday session and it hasn't changed. Great landlady (the famous Sue), no trouble, any untoward behaviour and you're out on your arse, F & C swearing ban when Sue is in the bar (rigidly enforced!) and a community atmosphere that doesn't exclude strangers or visitors. Always someone to help you out if help needed with cars, bikes, DIY etc or someone knew someone who could help, real bit of the community full stop.

    Nowadays any town centre is generally a carbon copy of the next, Walkabout, Wetherspoons, Yates, O'neils etc, was out in Watford recently and I could have been anywhere in the UK. Bunches of lads and lasses nights out seem to consist of endless rounds of shots, early high level of being pished and trouble soon after.

    Take a look at Guz, only ONE pub the length of Union Strasse (Wetherspoons) that is open during the day- Twigs is a nightclub, PR only open at night as an 80's bar, Clipper only open at 5 during the week, at least the Barbican keeps the flag flying for independent boozers and long may it continue.
  13. Whilst the breweries can dictate the price that tied houses buy the beer from them, then the pubs will continue to decline.
    I read yesterday that this practice is to continue and you'll see yet more pubs boarded up. And another nail is knocked in the coffins of the smaller breweries, the ones that make the best and real beer.
    Frankly though I think the standard of service, and in particular the cleanliness, of a lot of pubs leaves an awful lot to be desired; glasses in particular are often grubby to put it mildly. The sharpness of a lot of acts needs to be improved.
    A curious custom is buying the barman a drink, what's that about? The pub should be buying you a drink for continueing to frequent them, which is what happens around here and an awful lot of other places. Plus you get free nibbles and not crisps either, decent good quality bits and pieces.
  14. Been to Ashington a lot, got to go to Wansbeck hospital a lot [in fact that's where I was coming back from when I dropped in at Alnwick],last time some twat in Wetherspoons wanted to crack me out, in his cups, because I was wearing a tie and he thought I was a copper.
    I came away with the refection that we must have had the biggest army in the world with everyone in Ashington and Berwick wearing combat trousers and jackets!
    How many in your area wear them it's becoming as bad a shell suits!think I'll wear some bell bottoms around town.
  15. I think it has to be the price of drinking in the pub that is causing there closure.
    When I was 18 my navy pay was £7.00 a week, my food and accomodationwas provided and beer was one shilling a pint.
    So I had a wage of 140 beers a week :p

    Fast forward to 2009
    Beer is about £2.80 a pint, so multiplied by 140 that means to have the same standard of boozing that I had an 18 year old would have to receive at least £392 a week after tax, and he still has to find food and a roof over his head. :cry:
  16. Pubs are disappearing fast all over the UK and I heard that around 35 pubs a week are closing their doors for the last time. No idea where that stat came from or if its factually correct, only heard it said, funnily enough in a pub.

    I used to have a local almost opposite my house and I was able to get up from my chair, walk across the road and have a pint of beer in my hand within 3 minutes, even more quickly if Val the landlady saw me crossing the road. :) Sadly The Redlands was closed and demolished 2 years ago and now has 'retirement' flats on the land and as yet, only 2 of the 35 are being lived in and one of those is the caretaker. Sad eh?

    Another pub near me here in Fareham, The Admiral Cunningham will be closing soon as the landlady in there said she does not have enough custom to keep it open any longer and when her current licence runs out next year, she will not be renewing.

    As Wet Blobby stated, all the pubs these days are 'gastro pubs' and do not cater for what most of us would call a 'normal' drinker or 'regular' Long gone are the days when a pub really was a PUBLIC house where locals met, drank and swapped stories etc.

    The only pub I really enjoy going into now and again is The Park Tavern in Portsmouth, the rest are all the usual Wetherspoons, no atmosphere, full of chav twats and annoy the crap out of me.
  17. One of my locals, the Admiral Rodney, still provides a decent place to go for a pint.

    When in Guzz last year, just prior to going on terminal leave, I occasionally used to frequent the Brewery Tap in Stonehouse. I never went down the strasse but would still go out in the Barbican. A few years back I would often end up in the Clipper for a last pint (or two) before endex, but I couldn't tell you what the place is like now. The last time I went in they had a bouncer stood outside stopping people from going in if they were wearing trainers. I don't want that from a bog standard pub, so never went back. If you want to avoid the usual Navy, Maritime, Three Crowns run down the Barbican there are plenty of others that offer a more traditional atmosphere.

    I think one of the contributing factors to encourage the problem of binge drinking was when so many pubs were renovated and opened up the floor space, removing tables and chairs so minimising seating areas. I think being forced to stand and hold onto your drink 'cos you've nowhere to put it down psychologically encourages people to drink more quickly.
  18. I don't believe that the Smoking ban is the cause, it has just been the tipping point to finishing off the last of the decent locals as people think, well I can't listen to the jukebox, I can't play pool any more, I can't smoke and this is now costing me an arm and a leg!!
    I worked in pubs & nightclubs in London 13-14 years ago (in fact I started just as they brought in all day Sunday opening). Both the 'locals' that I worked for had a lively patronage from local council estates to local millionaires that all used to get drunk, talk BS and wobble home having had a great night out. We had our local football team and used to provide roast potatoes on the bar on Sundays. One is now a pizza restaurant come bar and the other is a 'gastro pub'.
    I miss the days of men looking at this 'skirt' playing pool, would feel sorry for me, play easy, and I'd beat them in about 3 rounds. (To which they'd have to have a re-match to assert their manliness, they'd still lose!! :D ).
    The last pub in my area to have a jukebox, pool table and karaoke nights/pub quiz closed about 5 years ago, to be replaced by a cocktail bar. :(
    Reality is, it's far cheaper to go to the Supermarket and get your own tinnies rather then hang around some poncy bar, that intentionally excludes certain people, trying to look fashionita and uninteresting!
    There’s no money in proper pubs, but then we must have all stopped going for a reason?
  19. The Pubs in my area that are not tied to a brewery/management company are thriving as they can pick and choose where they buy their beer, usually supporting the local micro breweries, and so offer it cheaper than tenants, love em or hate em it is what Weatherspoons have been doing for years.
    There are 2 Weatherspoons in York, both busy because they are giving the customer what he wants, beer at a reasonable price.
  20. Black Sheep?

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