Saturday, 1 May 2021

How would you like it, then?

Al fresco drinking gets off to a storming start in Scotland

Around the time of the implementation of the smoking ban, the question was often asked of drinkers who supported it whether they would be happy go outside to have a pint. The response was usually that it was a ludicrous and implausible scenario, and that the two things are entirely different.

However, that is exactly the situation that currently prevails in Scotland. You can go into a pub to eat a meal or have a soft drink (at least until 8 pm), but if you want an alcoholic drink you have to step outside. The same applied for a short period in Wales last year, and was mooted for England too.

Yes, it is only temporary, but it is a real-life example of consuming alcohol being seen as an undesirable activity. In a pub. Let that sink in.

23 comments:

  1. Catch 23. In many Scottish regions it is illegal to drink alcohol outdoors in a public place.

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  2. No more ludicrous than the 1872 Licensing Act which implicitly states that it is illegal to be drunk in the pub :-) :-)

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    1. There's a fine line between "merry" and "drunk".

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  3. This was based on the well known fact that all drinkers, after a few pints, start to laugh in each other's faces and feel an uncontrollable urge to hug strangers, saying "you're my best friend, you are". As stated in the 1872 Licensing Act

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    1. Spot on, that's exactly how the majority of politicians and media, who categorise pubs into a) Fullers Thameside gastro pubs that serve nice wine and b) "Boozers " full of hugging and dancing and licking. I only lick handpumps.

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  4. I went to the local on the Monday. Limited beers but OK, we had a few. Bloody cold though. I ended up wearing gloves. Been to all the local pubs now. Pretty good so far though prices are rather off putting. Larger over £4 a pint now, which is not a good look in North Huntingdonshire. Will be gracing one or two locals again tomorrow. Those with decent beers and non-outrageous prices. Just glad to see them operational. Nice to go inside soon too.

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  5. Being nosey, what is North Huntingdonshire ? Ramsey ? Or are you taking the historic county boundaries and including Peterborough ?

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    1. Peterborough is historically in Northamptonshire, although the Soke of Peterborough enjoyed a kind of special status. A beautiful and under-appreciated cathedral, although there's not much left of the old town around it.

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    2. Although, having read that article, it was briefly merged with Huntingdonshire between 1965 and 1974. Prior to that, the Soke of Peterborough had been an administrative county in its own right.

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    3. Never knew that. The local CAMRA produced an excellent pub guide which covered the city, Lincs, Rutland, Leicestershire, north Cambs and Northants (Oundle). A lot of John Smiths Bitter (cask) !

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    4. Once won a pub bet by naming all the immediate post WW 2 Counties of England 👍🍺🥴😊

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    5. Raises an interesting question of definition. Does that include the Soke of Peterborough? And divisions like Holland, Kesteven and Lindsey? And Counties of a City like Bristol and Liverpool? Coventry was also a county in its own right.

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    6. Such a pity all this confusion came about. The traditional counties still exist, unrelated to the constantly-changing boundaries of local government areas that sometimes share the same name. Check out the Association of British Counties website. Makes far more sense to have a permanent, geography-based frame of reference, as does Ireland, for example.

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    7. I'm a paid-up member :-)

      But the point is that, before 1974, there were several examples of areas that were administrative counties that weren't the recognised historic counties. Another one was the Isle of Ely.

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    8. What exactly do you mean by an "administrative county". Or, to put it another way: what powers did an authority need in order to style itself a county?

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    9. Surely an educated man of mature years like yourself should have a reasonable idea about this ;-)

      Prior to 1974, county councils had a range of higher-level powers including highways, education, libraries, registrars etc. In some areas these were carried out by councils at a lower level than the geographical county - for example, there was no Lincolnshire County Council, but these powers were exercised by the county councils of Holland, Kesteven and Lindsey.

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    10. I have an exact idea about this. There is no such beast as an "administrative county",
      A county is one of the 91 historic divisions of the United Kingdom and ate immutable. An administrative division is just that and usually gerrymandered by the government of the day to their political advantage.
      Pre 1974 the counties were usually but not always the top level administration for the area they covered. Yorkshire is the exception I best understand with four separate administrations.
      But what has this to do with the price of beer? So feel free to ignore me :-)

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  6. Off topic, Morrisons increased the prices of budvar and PU 500ml bottles from £1.54 to £2. Now they are in the 3 for £5 deal. Tesco seems to be struggling to fill the shelves with Paulaner Hell 500ml, this one seems to get more popular every week.

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  7. Replies
    1. Due to end a week on Monday, I think, along with (restricted) indoor opening in England and Wales.

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  8. Do I have to wear a mask while walking from a pub front door to a table? If so, pubs are not for me just yet.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, and to go to the toilet. It's utter nonsense.

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    2. Victoria Inn in Durham has a table one yard from the front door.

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