A PUBLICAN has made an impassioned plea to villagers to turn off their TVs and visit their local or face losing it.
Railing against the internet generation’s habit of messaging each other online rather than chatting face to face down the pub, Peter Mailer, landlord of the Black Bull in Warkworth, Northumberland, said – unlike many of his peers – that supermarkets are not to blame for the demise of the great British boozer.
Instead he suggested age, competition for people’s disposable income and greedy pub companies are the reason for the current state of the industry.
“The great British pub is, and always has been, the envy of the world,” Peter said, in a letter to the Northumberland Gazette. “A place to go when times are good, to celebrate with friends and strangers alike.
“When times are bad a place to go and share your woes and either get a friendly consoling ear from the landlady, or an element of humour or sarcasm from the landlord.
“Either way, you have a beer, relax, and the cares of the day slowly fade away and help you to face the next day on a more positive note.
“A place where over a pint or two, all the issues of the world can be put to right with the customary ‘abuse,’ banter and, of course, political correctness. In short a place to talk.
“Unfortunately, the great British public – in ever growing numbers – are forgetting all the ‘good times’ they have spent in the pub over the years.
“Instead they are watching the latest films on Sky, finding out who’s up to naughty things in Eastenders, Corrie or Emmerdale (which are all based on the local pub) and then tweeting, Facebooking or texting each other to discuss the fabricated rubbish they have just been watching – and washing it down with cheap booze from the supermarkets.
“The problem: Great British pubs are closing in great numbers and it isn’t the supermarkets that have caused it – they have always been there.
“It’s a combination of things like age (the older you get the less you want/need), disposable income (in the old days you had nothing else to spend money on, but now new cars, TVs, computers, mobile phones etc all take priority) and corporate greed from pub companies forcing the price of drinks up.
“The solution: You don’t have to go out every night, but if everyone who sits at home watching TV just went to the local pub and bought just one drink per week at £3, it would make a massive difference to the viability of many pubs and a massive difference to your own social life and wellbeing.
“Think of all the money raised for charity in pubs, the many organisations that meet in pubs, the good times we’ve all had – and what happens when the pub isn’t there any more?
“Remember, a good pub is for life, not just for Christmas. Use it, or lose it.”
What do you think? Is Peter right? Let us know in the comment section below.