The Great Pub Fightback – What You Can Do


It’s official; 39 British pubs close each week. According to the British Beer and Pub Association, the pub is dying out faster each year and will have completely vanished in less than thirty years, due less to the smoking ban than beer tax and property development.

Meanwhile, London is replacing the pub with something else; the extortionate ‘private’ club anyone can get into, where media folk and other shrieking drunks in advertising can go and be important.
But you can help fight back by patronising an unfashionable sausage-on-a-stick venue with your friends. Here’s how it works:

1. Find several like-minded people.

2. Choose a topic – the arts, sport, weird hobbies – it can be anything from “Let’s All Speak French Tonight’ to ‘Let’s Make Lists Of Our Favourite Movies’.

3. Give it a club name.

4. Find an unloved venue, ideally with an upstairs bar.

5. Talk to the landlord about meeting there once a week/ fortnight/ month.

6. Pubs need the money. Most will give you the room for FREE.

7. Start having fun.

I belong to several such home-made writers’ clubs. They’re great nights out, and you don’t have to queue for a six quid bottle of beer behind a bloke with a grandad cardie and ironed hair who calls himself a Creative because he sells ad space for Heat magazine.

As always, all ideas gratefully accepted.

Soho House chain acquires its toughest challenge

Soho House chain acquires its toughest challenge

4 comments on “The Great Pub Fightback – What You Can Do”

  1. Colin Stanton says:

    How about a one off Bryan & May night, maybe to tie in with the new book?

  2. I.A.M. says:

    Why not make it a regular thing merely as an excuse to drink? The weekly meeting of the “Arthur Bryant & John May Preservation Society” meets every Tuesday (because that’s a night that everyone wonders ‘why…?’ typically) and discusses, for example, both 17th Century Beetroot growing techniques as well as the latest advances in computerised database management?

    Or base it around Roofworld and everyone must arrive from above the building every Thursday evening (so as not to conflict with Tuesday night’s event).

    Or perhaps Spanky and … erm… has anyone here read it and knows what it about, other than seen the cover and suspected its about Gay Porn?

  3. BangBang!! says:

    I gace a copy of Spanky to a girl friend and then remembered the rude bits. I felt I had to apologise; don’t know why – she’s 25! So I’m not sure about a Spanky Night.

    Although, I don’t know now that I think about it – it might get quite a crowd in!

  4. A.B. says:

    I have always been fascinated by The Bloomsbury Group and the idea of a ‘meeting of minds’. A friend was talking to me recently about the possibility of starting one and now here you are talking about the very same subject!
    I like the idea of using an upstairs room of pub too. A room full of people will passion is far more appealing than a room full of ‘been there, done that’ know it all industry types.

    I think I may have to look into this further….
    Thanks for unknowingly reminding me

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