Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Do the hokey-cokey

It wasn’t exactly a good advertisement for joined-up government when the Home Office announced that they wouldn’t be giving pubs a blanket extension for England’s late-night opening World Cup match, only to be in effect overruled by the Prime Minister the following day.

The argument that it wasn’t an event of national significance was ridiculous given how many pubs were likely to be interested in it, and was yet more evidence of how out-of-touch Civil Service mandarins are with ordinary people. And the alternative wasn’t pubs not opening, but having to apply for Temporary Event Notices on an individual basis, which would have cost each pub £21 and also resulted in a burden on councils who are always moaning about the cost of licensing administration.

So, a victory for common sense, but you have to wonder at the thought process that led the Home Office to make such a joyless “computer says no” announcement in the first place. Having said that, given that the matches will be on free-to-air TV, they may not be quite the moneyspinner that some licensees imagine. I can see many people preferring to opt for a few pints in the pub and then returning to watch it in the comfort of their own home.

Me? I’ll probably be tucked up safely in bed by then.


  1. That's coalitions.

    tucked up in bed? I thought we were all round your gaff for a footie party ? You know, bring a bottle of cheap undrinkable crap. Neck all your posh good stuff. Make a racket until your neighbours complain. Puke in your flower pots, ruin your carpet. Get in the spirit of national elation and eventual disappointment ;)

  2. I would be amazed if the whole thing wasn't carefully choreographed to play out exactly like this.

    If they had just announced that pubs would be able to stay open later it would have been largely non-news. But to have it announced that they wouldn't, give it 24 hours to soak in and then for the Prime Minister to miraculously step in and save the day for good honest working class voters makes him look like some kind of hero.

    He's pulled this "overruling" stunt before and I'm sure he will do it a few more times before the election. If in doubt, hint strongly that it was the lib dems what done it.

  3. @Cooking Lager

    You forgot the fist fight in the front garden. It's not a proper party until someone is knocked on their arse in a flower bed.

  4. When it's a case of cock-up vs conspiracy I generally favour cock-up.

    If iDave had been consciously angling for public approval he would have done a whole raft of things differently.

  5. @Sean Goes without saying regarding Mudge. It'll be Mudge in the front garden having the fight ;)

    Tip: at a party at Mudgies gaff, never ever ever ever under any circumstances look at his bird.

  6. Yes, the flaw in conspiracy theory is that it gives too much credence to government intelligence. Which we know there is little of.

  7. Eye Ty, but what if there is a greater conspiracy? One to convince us that the official government is incompetent and badly run, whilst hiding the shadow government of people with their trouser legs rolled up that is ruthlessly efficient in their progress of a new world order that communicates only in secret illuminati symbology?

    Pubs having no place in this new world order, only anonymous sterile canteens lacking atmosphere? The plan being to make you accept it with beer and burger offers and 50p off a pint tokens.

    Stock up on diesel, bottled water, dried & canned goods & automatic weapons, my friends for soon, all will be Wetherspoons.

  8. I find it hard to believe that the government are as stupid as some people would have us believe. On a personal level they all seem to be making a lot of money in, ahem, donations of gratitude for the policies they have enacted, and if they say the right things and get elected again they can keep the money rolling in for another 5 years.

  9. Who the hell is kidding whom ?
    watching footbal in a pub quarter full of twitching drones and froth sniffing loners,not to mention the hand wafting fresh air loons.Even the Medusa would give that a miss. We must admit some sympathy and regrets for those poor wretches ,unwanted and unloved who may have to endure such pains and tribulations
    Bles em

    Benefit Grove

  10. Only thing worse than ditherers at Christmas is trying to get served in a pub when Engerland are on the telly.


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