Monday 28 December 2009

Any bets on a pub revival?

There have been various comments in the beer blogosphere suggesting that we are likely to see a revival in the pub trade in 2010. This one by Paul Garrard is one example – I’m sure I’ve seen a similar one by Tandleman, but I can’t locate it at present. Locally we have seen high-profile reopenings of the Magnet in Stockport and the Black Lion in Salford. However, I have to say I think this is all dust in the wind – we may see a few more optimistic reopenings in 2010, but on balance we will continue to see closures vastly outnumbering openings. But you can give your opinion in the poll.


  1. As more pubs close ,their lost
    custom will obviously help to sustain the survivors and possibly enable the re opening of others.
    The damage to the social infrastructure will continue as more and more of the young will see
    the pub as a unit of social exclusion. More and more pubs are
    taking the "foodie"path driving even greater numbers of normal drinkers away. There is a very simple remedy which we all know
    would make all the difference,but
    unfortunately the voices of reason
    are to few and disunited.
    Some of the advocates of the smoking ban seem to have gone into hiding recently,however ,they will be found

    Was 7 nights a week in the pub

  2. I think there are signs that things are bottoming out. Here in Middleton we've seen a couple of re-openings and trade seems better all round.

    Your poll is though rather lopsided. A fairer question might have been "Will we see an upturn in the on trade in 2010?"

    Of course your blog polls are always going to be contaminated by the bias towards smokers in the way you pose your questions. But you know that.

  3. I hope there is a pub revival,an old victorian pub near my home closed down recently due to a criminal element taking it over,regular customers stopped going due to drug dealing,then one regular who still dared to go for his usual pint was murdered in the carpark,the place is now boarded up and falling to bits...another closed due again to a criminal gang using it as a meeting place,normal folks stopped going and it is now a bed centre...another half a mile away closed just before xmas,the crims needed somewhere to go, started intimidating the regulars and that was that it is now boarded up and falling to bits....these 3 pubs used to have a thriving scene but no customers no business...

  4. I don't think it's as simple as pubs closing strengthening the existing ones. Many areas are known for their vibrant pubs and when a few close that area is no longer a destination for a night out.

    My prediction for 2010 is that more mugs with redundancy money will choose to piss it away on a failed foray into the pub business, and the cycle of openings and closings will continue.

  5. Stan makes a fair point as one pub closes down that pubs regulars find somewhere else to go, if the former place was a drug ridden shit hole then before long the new haunt also becomes a drug ridden shit hole, i have seen this happen by me on two occasions with both pubs struggling for custom they allowed anybody in, driving round Brum today i saw another three closed down.

  6. On the times I've been back to the Steam Packet the place has been bloody heaving. I've no doubt more pubs will close than reopen, but the signs do look better for 2010.

    More pubs will survive if they start to take marketing seriously.

    I'm afraid I tend not to vote in polls very often - I really don't get the point of them, but that's just me I suspect.

  7. Martin, Cambridge29 December 2009 at 23:00

    I'm certainly seeing a growth in real ale trade; the conversion of keg or marginal-cask pubs in Wellington Road North is mirrored in my own city, where a fair choice decent if not great quality real ale is not the norm. I'm also noticing people drinking real ale I wouldn't have expected to do so.

    However, that's not the same as a revival in pub-going and pubd in general - as you note, lunchtime and weekday drinking in general seems to be on a irreversible slide pretty much everywhere.


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