Sunday, 8 February 2009

How many pubs do you go to?

Some years ago, I remember a work colleague telling me about someone they knew on Tyneside, who was a middle-aged man and fairly hardened drinker, but reckoned he had only visited about 25 different pubs in his life. I suppose this is believable, particularly if he always took foreign package holidays, but it struck me as completely at variance from my own experience as someone who takes a positive interest in visiting new and different pubs.

Now I’m not someone who spends every night, or even most nights, out drinking, but even so I reckon over the years I must have visited somewhere between two and three thousand different pubs, maybe more. So this prompted me to run a poll on how many different pubs readers of the blog visited in a typical month. This has now closed, and the 26 responses were as follows:

0: 8 (30%)
1: 1 (3%)
2: 3 (11%)
3-5: 4 (15%)
6-10: 4 (15%)
11-20: 5 (19%)
Over 20: 1 (3%)

The number of people answering 0 is perhaps a little surprising, as you wonder what they’re doing reading a blog about pubs and beer in the first place; however, in the last week I seem to have sparked some interest in the political blogosphere and that’s probably what’s behind it. It should be noted that the poll is nothing to do with how much you drink – the respondents could have been drinking soft drinks in each pub.

For what it’s worth, I reckon I visited 11 different pubs in January. None for the first time, although two I had not visited for some years. That’s probably quite a low figure for me – a month including a holiday or a CAMRA pub crawl would give rather more. Even so, I suspect that is more than at least 95% of the population.


  1. Glad you explained the 0%votes, otherwise I'd have been scratching my head. I'm similar to you in terms of pub experience and it always comes as a ahock how few people actually get to. Still, 25, for a middle aged drinker seems a low number.

  2. It's a very low number, but I have no reason to believe the guy who told me it was making it up, and it's stuck in my mind.

    You always have to be careful not to assume that other people approach life in anything like the same way as yourself. The limited amount many people, not necessarily poor, travel in their own country, and their complete ignorance of its geography, can be quite staggering at times.

  3. At the other extreme, I visited 37 different pubs in January - a half pint in most, exploring the greatness of Britain's pub stock (mainly Beer Guide). I still stayed well within Government guidance on units (most nights)!


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