Posts Tagged ‘Greg Mulholand’

A pub is more than a place to drink

14/04/2011, 07:45:46 AM

by Peter Watt

I love the pub; going for a pint has been a Watt family thing as long as I can remember. I look back and smile when think about going for my first pint with my Dad at The Tatnam pub in Poole. It was a special rite of passage. One that I repeated with my own son only last year. The Tatnam was our local family pub where we went at Christmas and special occasions. It was where, over the years, my Dad went and met a few “bar mates”.  In fact, it was where over the years we all gathered whenever we got together as a family.  And it was where we continued to take my Dad over the months when he was dying. His last pint there was a few days before he died. Going with him was a ritual that we all valued, a comfort at a terrible time. After he died, we again all went there, and there was a picture of him behind the bar for months.

The Tatnam closed last year and is now a supermarket.

Of course, pubs are closing all over the country.  This year, although the rate of closures has slowed, they are still closing at a rate of 25 per week. At the end of 2010 there were 1300 fewer pubs than at the beginning of the year, with a loss of 13,000 jobs. We all know why this is happening, cheap supermarket booze, the smoking ban and lifestyle changes. Tax on alcohol has been steadily rising with the alcohol duty escalator raising duty by 2% above inflation. The recent budget added about 4p to the price of a pint of beer – 5p in my local. There are, of course, some sound public policy reasons for the smoking ban and alcohol duty rises. But there is also no doubting the heavy price being paid by our pubs. (more…)

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