According to statistics released earlier this week it appears that
once again the British local pub is under threat, not from the government
or even the growing pub chains, this time from supermarkets and off
New figures suggest that more people are staying in and drinking
beer at home than ever before. Currently nearly 40 per cent of beer
purchases are from shops, compared to 14 per cent in 1982. Following
this trend could mean over 50 per cent will be purchased this way
by the turn of the decade.
There is much debate as to the cause of this with sociologists
suggesting that it is due to the increase in variety and quality
of home entertainment, but most drinkers will tell you it is more
likely down to the rising prices of pub beer in comparison to supermarket
For example, a quick look at a leaflet from a local supermarket
shows Carling to be approximately £0.70 per pint (based on
24 x 440ml) compared to the average pub price of in excess of £2.50.
With figures like this it is easy to see why the dramatic change
has occurred in the last 20 years, but does this mean even more
of out traditional pubs will close?
Trade insiders insist this will not happen, they say evolution
is the answer and they are already adapting to this with a greater
selection of drinks and the serving of food. But what about the
pubs that don`t want to go down this route, or simply can't, what
will happen to them?
The simple answer is nobody knows and only time will tell.