Hilarious. I love this story of British publicans taking matters into their own hands. It seems the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, placed a 4p increase on the price of a pint, at a time when a pint already costs 25p more than it did one month ago, plus has “pledged to raise duty on alcohol by 2% above inflation for the next four years.” His budget is seen as only helping supermarket chains, whose share of the beer market has increased due to cheap pricing, which many have termed “pretty irresponsible alcohol retailing.” Pubs had already been losing ground to retail pricing wars and had asked for a freeze on prices to hep save pubs. Apparently, Darling was deaf to their concerns and now they’ve responded by banning him from every pub in England (or at least in all the participating ones—which after one day numbers 170). Obviously, the actual banning will do little to change things, but presumably the attendant publicity might.
They’ve created a poster which they’re encouraging pub owners to display in the window of their establishment featuring Darling behind bars and the word BARRED in large block letters.
It’s even spread to Brussels, where at least one pub—O’Farrells—has also put the poster in their front window. UK Independence Party head Nigel Farage noticed while there earlier today, about which he is quoted.
“Every politician who voted for the smoking ban and an increase in alcohol taxes at this difficult time for our pubs should be banned,” said Farage.
“However, most of our politicians are so detached from reality that they probably don’t visit pubs.”
They’ve also set up a group about the ban on Facebook.
I can think of plenty of our own politicians we should do likewise with.
This is the poster is available for download.
The Beer Nut says
I have very little sympathy for publicans when they go off on these sorts of whines, especially after reading stories like this one.
I’ve little doubt that the UK’s publicans aren’t the money-grubbing power-hungry enemies of the conscientious drinker that virtually all of the ones in this country are, but I’m still guessing that quite a few of them, the loudest protesters, will be adding a little bit extra onto that duty hike for themselves.
I live in Britain and haven’t see one of these, apart from on a couple of right-wing political blogs and a couple of beer blogs! I doubt more than a dozen pubs in the country will display them, and those that do won’t exactly be classy establishments…
The beer duty rises were a very bad thing, of course. If anything, rates should have fallen.
I note that Cameron drinks in all the right pubs these days!