The Unaffordable Pint

The exorbitant price of a beer in the pubs may well be keeping lots of punters at home, suggests pub advocacy group, The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA).

In a recent online YouGov poll, 45% of people who votes claimed that the average cost of a pint in the UK was “fairly unaffordable”, whilst 11% said it was very “unaffordable”.

As it stands the average cost of a pint in the UK is now £3.20.

No prizes for guessing which city tops the highest end of the pricing scale! A cold one in London will now set you back around £5.20 – with many landlords pushing the price over the £6 mark!

Other pricey beer hotspots include Oxford (£4.57), Bristol and Edinburgh (both£4.35) and Brighton (£4.24). Meanwhile, Carlise is the place to head for pint value seekers – at £2.35, its average pint is just 2/3rds cost of the national median.

CAMRA have pointed to a variety of tax increase levelled by the Government on landlords in recent years – including business rates, beer duty and VAT, as the cause of the increase in pricing. With premium and mass-market beer being sold in bulk from supermarkets for as little as £1 for a can, landlords and their coin operator suppliers are suffering a significant market-loss as punters opt to drink at home for less.

“It is no surprise that most people are finding pub pints unaffordable, given the tax burden they are facing” said a spokesperson from CAMRA. “Beer drinkers will naturally look to a more cost effective way to enjoy a drink, such as buying from off licences and supermarkets for home consumption”.

As the rate of the pub closures, particularly in the Southeast of England continues to grow apace, the treasury’s preliminary indications of the November budget show no signs of relief for publicans. At present, the treasury has claimed that beer duty will rise a further 2p, despite the fact that pubs are due to lose £1000 in small business rate relief next year.

“The result of closures is incredibly detrimental to our local communities and to our own personal connectivity”, CAMRA added.

“Having a good local makes people happier, better connected and more trusting. They help bring communities together and support the local economy. The reality is that there are a few places that can replicate the benefit provided by the nation’s pubs, and once they are gone, they are gone forever.

We at Comrie could not agree more with what Camra are saying. Local pubs are a vital part of our community especially in this day and age where people do not seem to know any of their neighbours these days. But if you go to your local friendly pub people still do that old art called talking!!!

If there was a minimum pricing policy this would raise alcohol prices in the supermarket which in turn would put off underage and heavier drinkers but have no detrimental affect on our public houses and social clubs. As the article states it is not just pubs that are going to suffer even more but any business feeding off them, when is many.

This is also why pubs and social clubs need the latest fruit machines and up to date digital gaming machines to ensure they can generate good machine revenue to help them through these difficult times.

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