June 29th, 2011

Labour’s Ban Comes Home To Roost

Amend the Ban

Given the last Labour government went out of their way to hit pubs and clubs with regulations, duties and, worst of all, the smoking ban, it’s no surprise to see their actions come back to bite them. CR Consulting have found that Labour constituencies are being disproportionately hit  by the pub closures. Though Tory held Westminster suffered the most closures, nine out of the top ten worst hit seats were Labour:

Cities of London and Westminster, Con -99 pubs
Birmingham, Ladywood, Lab -56 pubs
Glasgow Central, Lab -56 pubs
Manchester Central, Lab -49 pubs
Liverpool, Riverside, Lab -45 pubs
Bristol West, LD -39 pubs
Leeds Central, Lab -38 pubs
Edinburgh North and Leith, Lab -34 pubs
Argyll and Bute, LD -32 pubs
Nottingham South, Lab -31 pubs

Guido will be supporting a cause that is very dear to his heart today, the campaign to Save our Pubs and Clubs as they hold a lobby of parliament this afternoon. Labour MPs might want to have a little think about the impact of their actions on their own constituencies…


  1. 1
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Bang on, And how many unemployed bar staff have been created?

    Labour always leave office with higher unemployment.

  2. 2
    Antipo-dean says:

    Looks a lot like seven out of the top ten to me, Guido. But them I’m only an engineer, +/- 20% doesn’t matter to us.

  3. 3
    Backwoodsman says:

    “Labour MPs might want to have a little think ” – all they’re capable of. !

  4. 4
    Arithmetical Simon says:

    With two apparently held by the LibDems, do you mean seven of the top ten, not nine of the top ten, are Labour seats?

  5. 5
    Gordon Brown says:

    My botty always smokes.

  6. 6
    will says:

    In surveys before the ban was effected, a lot of non smokers said thye would go to pubs. This was used as evidence tofor the ban as trade would not drop. It seems that they are not.

    So landlords have less people going to pubs so are having to close down. Without the offering of food in pubs this would be a lot worse.

  7. 7
    Middle ground says:

    I have no problem with there being a designated smoking area in a pub but not in a pub as a whole. Why should I have to put up with someone else’s smoke? Separate area for the smokers is fine but not a return to general smoking.

  8. 8
    Postlethwaite says:

    If pub prices were not so high, maybe the numbers would be smaller.

    Lager from Sainsbury; a few of the lads; sky TV Klichko Hay fight; no contest.

  9. 9
    Drop a Daisy cutter on the BBC says:

    Anyone else see BBC mong Paul Mason last night? He looked like he was enjoying the lefty protests from Greece, what with his gas mask and duffle coat.

    “UP THE WORKERS” hey Paul, no BBC bias there then.

  10. 10
    Koba says:

    Pubs that close seem to end up being smoked by yobs anyway.

  11. 11
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    If i may expend on my point, This hits younger people harder as they would often get part time jobs working as bar staff while studying at collage/uni (getting real life experience before getting hired as a spad or something) , Pubs when i was young were centre of the community and the local Landlord would be respected, Under 18s would be allowed a beer (If they had a parent with them) and taught how to drink responsabilty, Look at it now and you see weekend after weekend of young people going out on the lash (Often pre loading) getting out of there face because it is the cool thing to do.

    Personal responabilty has been eroded by the last goverment who created a blame cultre (it cant be your fault, for whatever reason) , People no longer fear rephisals , The youth no longer respect thier elders and whole communities live sepratly and in isolation of eachother.

    I used to enjoy going to the pub on a sunny afternoon and sitting there with my pint and a fag.

    This law has to be scrapped and asap , let the market decide if people like a non smoking to a smoking pub.

  12. 12
    Sir William Waad says:

    Birmingham Ladywood includes one of the city’s two main clubbing areas that had become hopelessly overstocked with near-identical establishments all competing to provide the cheapest red bull vodka. It was due for a pruning.

  13. 13
    That's News says:

    A landlord told me that the smoking ban had no impact on his trade. He was, infact, mildly surprised that trade rose by a modest amount.

    What caused him to quit was the very high rents charged by the pubco which meant he had to go back to long distance lorry driving to make ends meet.

    He said to me: “When I realised I was subsidising the bloody brewery who owned the pub via a dodgy front company I thought: “Sod it! Time pack up!”

  14. 14
    sockpuppet #4 says:

    I’m not convinced that its that simple. I remember pubs getting less crowded from the late 80s onwards, and my favourite teenage haunts being shut before the ban.

  15. 15
    Ed at next week's PMQs says:

    Mr Speaker, can the Prime Minister tell us why Mrs Jones in Lowestoft had to wait 34 minutes to be seen by her local GP on 12th March? Is this not a sign of the cuts hitting the most vulnerable? And if he can’t answer my question, then people up and down the country will ask if the prime minister has any control of his health policy.

  16. 16
    Em says:

    Bigger problem is massive increase in alcohol duty, and shit management of many pubs.

  17. 17
    Gordon 'Prick' Brown says:

    I would never join any club that would have me as a member.

  18. 18
    Steve Miliband says:

    Pubs/shops closing are symptomatic of high rents. The commercial property bubble is bursting

  19. 19
    Bill Clinton says:

    I enjoy a good cigar.

  20. 20
    Browns Law says:

    The government of the day will always get the blame regardless of what went on before.

  21. 21
    Sceptical Simon says:

    I don’t think in the modern world that you should expect any claims to actually pan out in reality. I mean, they’re not supposed to be forecasts, they’re just a bit of supportive marketing for something it’s been decided is going to happen.

  22. 22
    the last quango in paris says:

    and given that you need to be drunk to vote Labour they are screwed :)

  23. 23
    Minekiller says:

    Pubs and clubs are great civil society entities and places with decent and well run pubs, especially in rural areas are indicators of high social capital. Labour and the new blue-labour hate people associating and organising. It is to my mind an assault on people and communities. Divide, control, rule.

  24. 24
    Peter Grimes says:

    There is probably a whole shed load of money to be made by turning former pubs into flats/serviced apartments/clubs/brothels in London & Westminster, although not necessarily in that order. Even more than trying to screw ever more rent out of ever less populous pubs!

  25. 25
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Nah, they just go down the supermarket and get a case of cheap lager or something.

  26. 26
    Iain Dale's Stunt Codpiece says:

    The problem is because landlords have driven away their non-smoking clientele over many years due to their collective shortsightedness – a partial ban was never going to work, so the only way to make pubs habitable and to protect staff from the harmful effects of smoke is a complete ban on smoking in pubs.

    It will take time for non-smokers to become re-acquainted with pub-going, and there will be people who lose out in the meantime.

    Also, the difference in price between supermarket alcohhol and pub prices is a significant factor in the decline in the licensed trade, not something that will go away.

    The government would be mad to go back on the smoking ban – it’d be seen as fatcat MPs looking out for the rights of fatcat businesses to sell toxic products to idiots who don’t know better.

  27. 27
    Peter Grimes says:

    Probably because gay haunts have become more common since then so your favourite pubs lost trade, of all sorts.

  28. 28
    Anonymous says:

    Can anyone tell me why they closed the Red Lion on the High St?

    It wasn’t that bad?

  29. 29
    sockpuppet #4 says:

    I can’t quite remember, but always thought that about 20 years ago beer in pubs wasn’t far off the prïce in shops. These days its easily 3-4x .

  30. 30
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:


    Could you clear up a point for me please?

    Is there not a bar/club at the commons where MPs can smoke?

  31. 31
    smoggie says:

    That’s precisely what is proposed.

  32. 32
    Tron says:

    Most people who smoke also drink. The millions of smokers who were effectively banned from pubs were the regular customers.
    The pubs are left with customers who only go occasionally. That is why thousands of pubs and clubs have closed.
    There should be smoking bars and non-smoking bars. It’s called freedom and choice.

  33. 33
    Albert Hall says:

    I don’t think it’ll make the slightest difference to how these MPs will be thinking, they know that Labour voters are seriously deficient in the reasoning department.

  34. 34
    Desperate Dan says:

    What’s happened to Sky News? It used to be a welcome haven of common sense and a refuge from the BBC but they’ve suddenly gone all downmarket and bent over backwards to see something good about Ed.

  35. 35
    Anonymous says:

    Yep, that might have a little something to do with it. Most managers will tell you that the catering side is the key to reasonable profits.

  36. 36
    Anonymous says:

    The IMF made sure you never got the chance to join.

  37. 37
    Anonymous says:

    Set the fuckers on fire.

  38. 38
    Moussa Koussa says:

    This is the daftest analogy I have ever seen…..LOL

    The reason Guido is coz Tory voters and consequently MP’s are none existent in major populated areas errrr like UK cities

    …and the smoking bans aint gonna be reversed

  39. 39
    Drop a Daisy cutter on the BBC says:

    Sarah-Jane Mee is looking mighty fine on Sky News today, I like them walking around now, she’s got a great little body :)

  40. 40
    sockpuppet #4 says:

    you sad git. no.

  41. 41
    Lady Virginia Droit de Seigneur says:

    Pub users in the areas listed tend to be working class – the sort of people Labour once represented.

    Since the vast majority of the PLP consists of immature detached middle class PPE graduates parachuted into far off constituencies (like the two Eds) or the sort of harridan who would not set foot in a pub as it is a place where men talk about football and women (see Harman, Vera Baird) it is not surprising they don’t give a shit about their local.

  42. 42
    Smig says:

    The whole of Birmingham Ladywood and Birmingham Hodge Hill need pruning.

  43. 43
    Anonymous says:

    “Labour MPs might want to have a little think about the impact of their actions on their own constituencies…”

    Would make a refreshing change, as most Labour constituencies would vote for a pot noodle with a red rosette pinned to it.

  44. 44
    smoggie says:

    The smoking ban lets you see what type of customer the pub attracts without having to venture inside. If you see some chavvy types with “status” dogs having a fag on the doorstep you can quickly move on to find another establishment without the riff-raff.

  45. 45
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Its been attempted, however it didnt work out to well for the person that did try.

  46. 46
    smoggie says:

    ..easily amused.

  47. 47
    Kitsunegari says:

    The tax on beer, cider and spirits has had a much more detrimental affect. I’m fairly young and can remember a pint in my local being about £1.50 about ten years ago. Now its well over 3 quid. Also, the fact that there are so many pubs about is another reason. I have three in my village, with one almost about to close if business doesn’t pick up. Moreover, the cheap price of alcohol in the supermarkets makes it much cheaper to drink in the house than in the pub. Furthermore, barmen continue to serve drunken idiots (even though doing so is against the law), these idiots make it impossible to enjoy your night and your pint. We can’t blame the smoking ban on this one I’m afraid. Finally, the fact that heart attacks etc have dropped over the years because folk are cutting back on the fags far out weighs the fact that a few dive pubs have had to close.

  48. 48
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    Is that one of Ed’s questions next week?

  49. 49
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    “fatcat businesses to sell toxic products to idiots who don’t know better.”

    alcohol or fags?

  50. 50
    the last quango in paris says:

    http://www.softpedia.com text comparison app i believe

  51. 51
    mummy says:

    About time you got out of your wankpit Jonty.

  52. 52
    Charlie Kennedy says:

    Make mine a triple.

  53. 53
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Check her out at the weekend , she co-presents a Sky sports show.

    9am Stats day

  54. 54
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    Birmingham is only a hamlet, after all.

  55. 55
    Archer Karcher says:

    Shrinking disposable income and high cost are the main reasons why pubs are closing. Both of which are a direct result of government policy, from both ZaNu-Labour and Dave’s Continuity-Fabians.

  56. 56
    Cough says:

    The smoking ban was the most middle-class friendly piece of legislation that has been passed for many years. But I’m sure Labour will forget they passed it, much like student tuition fees etc.

  57. 57
    Rat's arse says:

    The Leiber government all but criminalsed smoking, although it is not illegal. What Leiber never gets into their thick skulls is that people resent being told what to do. I’m surprised they didn’t ban f”rting/singing out of tune/being seen in public if ugly……etc. Why did they not ban the effin b”rka? Think I know why! How I detest the whole lousy lot in the Leiber party.

  58. 58
    Steve Miliband says:

    No, unless it was a Micro Brewery

  59. 59
    annette curton says:

    Ha.Ha, Billy don’t be so naive, its called the Palace of Westminster, and very conveniently Palaces are exempt from all the petty laws that apply to you or me, they can smoke, drink, get a pole dancer in and generally cavort 24/7 and nobody can touch them for it, you have to admire the brazen cheek of it all.

  60. 60
    Steve Miliband says:

    So, Gordon, how’s the new job at the IMF working out?

  61. 61
    smoggie says:

    Pubs, and not even breweries, are seen as fatcat businesses.

    There’s been smoking in pubs since pubs were invented. To suggest that non-smokers have been driven out by smokers is laughable.

  62. 62
    Rat's arse says:

    Or a pig ‘anonymous’. They’re all as thick as domkeys’ dongers.

  63. 63
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Thanks for that :-)

    Anyone got a suggestion on what to do?

  64. 64
    Rat's arse says:

    **donkeys** oops

  65. 65
    Anonymous says:

    So, non-smokers lie. Question is, do they lie more than smokers?

  66. 66
    Archer Karcher says:

    I refer you to my earlier post.
    Pub prices directly reflect government policy from high taxation to high fuel and duty costs. Instead of relentlessly forcing up pubs bottom lines, policy should be the reverse of what it is.
    However Dave’s feeble coalition would probably run a mile if the health nazis he and Labour nurture, started yapping about ‘encouraging drinking’.

  67. 67
    Sky Nooz says:

    Was that Will Straw talking utter shit a moment ago on Sky? Now it’s John Bruiser Reid giving his two cents on cyberterror. Fuck off, cock.

  68. 68
    I don't need no doctor says:

    I bet Ed Balls has already denied it!

  69. 69
    Steve Miliband says:

    The mild cigar from Benson and Hedges

  70. 70
    Scumwatch says:

    Because cities are full of scum.

    People, with a choice, don’t want to live in crime-ridden shit-holes with crap schools, unless they are over-privelaged Guardian reading trustafarians who can afford to send their kids to private schools or because they won’t have any because they are gay.

    De-urbanisation of the middle-class has been happening for decades you Liebour turd. Gerry-mandered boundaries have been giving them a very unequal say in who goes to parliament. At least that is going to change!

  71. 71
    Archer Karcher says:

    Just the whole of Birmingham works for me.

  72. 72
    Anonymous says:

    Pubs are closing because they are expensive.

  73. 73
    Tax Payer says:

    Yeah, his assessment was we would go to Afghanistan and not fire a shot.

    Not quite worked out that way. C’UNT.

  74. 74
    annette curton says:

    Hang the lot of them?.

  75. 75
    Lady Virginia Droit de Seigneur says:

    I did wonder whether the 32 closures in Argyll and Bute were due to the fact that you’d gone teetotal.

  76. 76
    I don't need no doctor says:

    It’s amazing how these labour types always have money for fags, alcohol, dogs, tattoos, piercings.

  77. 77
    Another Engineer says:

    Just the hole of Birmingham


  78. 78
    sockpuppet #4 says:

    I rekon that people who have stopped going in pubs because they’re getting middle aged are in denial.

  79. 79
    Anonymous says:

    MPs’ pensions

    A funded final salary scheme

    Normal retirement age is 65, minimum age is 55

    MPs can contribute either 11.9%, 7.9% or 5.9% of their £65,738-a-year salary

    Payments are increased in line with the retail prices index

  80. 80
    Anonymous says:

    Is Christine taking on an intern?

  81. 81
    sockpuppet #4 says:

    You must have hacked my email

  82. 82
    Must get a pseudonym one day says:

    It’s cause and effect – the brewers anticipated the smoking ban and, knowing that beer sales would be the most affected, get into bed with the bulk retailers (supermarkets) ahead of it to develop mass take-away sales offerings which would maintain their levels of profits.

    The supermarkets love it, the brewers love it, the government still gets its Excise Duty – the only losses are the social environment of pubs and clubs and the unemployment of bar staff.

    And we’re all smoking the same amount, we just refuse to go to nannied places, so we stay at home and have fun, saving lots of money in the process.

    Watching Nick Herbert wriggling on Daily Politics today (turncoat), there’s little hope of the ban being reviewed, so let them all close down – they don’t deserve our custom because they didn’t vigorously oppose the ban up-front.

  83. 83
    Archer Karcher says:

    Also the reduction in the legal limit did rural pubs no favours at all.
    It used to be accepted that two pints had a negligable effect on driving standards, which in turn meant a trip to the pub would last an hour or so.
    Now with a limit of around one pint, it’s barely worthwhile for a law abiding motorist to bother with.
    By the time you have said hi to everyone and shared a joke, it’s time to leave.

  84. 84
    Sir William Waad says:

    There was, actually, never any sound evidence that ‘passive smoking’ caused harm to bar staff. There is a great deal of statistical stuff available on the web about this, but studies tending to suffer from:

    (1) Reporting bias;
    (2) A tendency for reports funded by the tobacco industry to find no effect, while reports paid for by anti-smoking campaigners found a large effect;
    (3) The impossibility of ruling out other factors rigorously (for instance whether bar staff lived in places where others smoked)
    (4) Findings of low statistical significance that were cracked up as if they were significant;
    (5) A tendency to rely on data dredges, or surveys of surveys.

  85. 85
    Anna Conda says:

    I agree. I was in a pub recently that was charging £3.90 for a pint of 3.9% bitter. That’s just taking the piss, I’m not paying that sort of price.
    I used to go to the pub every night. Now it’s once a week.
    And I’m 100% in favour of the smoking ban. I’d make it illegal to smoke outside a building as well (you should see the amount of fag-ends outside my workplace’s back and front doors).

  86. 86
    Up sh1t creek says:

  87. 87
    Smig says:

    The turnover rate of licensees along Broad Street speaks for itself.

  88. 88
    Archer Karcher says:

    I left Londonistan twenty years ago.
    I am never amazed by how much it has become a balkanised ghetto in large parts, though I am always saddened when I return to areas that were once pristine and see how far down to third world status they have sunk.

  89. 89
    Smig says:

    That’s not a bad idea. As long as I’m allowed to turn it into a Special Economic Zone with reduced business rates, reduced corporation tax, and

  90. 90
    Smig says:

    a very small local council.

  91. 91
    Desperate Dan says:

    I saw that. The BBC is keen to sympathise with the hooligans who don’t want to pay tax and ignore the people who are hopping mad about the government’s mismanagement of the economy during the past ten years. They only report what fits in with their narrative.

  92. 92
    Archer Karcher says:

    Hazel Blears, I rest the case for the prosecution M’Lord.

  93. 93
    annette curton says:

    I seem to remember his take was that our troops would only be engaged in winning hearts and minds, the local population would all rush out and festoon them with garlands of poppy flowers, what an Arsehole!.

  94. 94
    Reimer says:

    Have the bastards actually enacted that reduction? If yes, they’re even bigger bastards than I thought.

  95. 95
    Smig says:

    Not bad at all. I’d bounce my bellend off her kidneys.

  96. 96
    Drop a Daisy cutter on the BBC says:

    Mason always sound so excited when he’s commenting on a lefty violence fest, bet he has a boner on.

  97. 97
    Postlethwaite says:

    i get the feeling you are saying that Nanny does not know best.
    And that is clearly absurd.
    Calling Nanny a Nazi will get you put on the naughty step before you know it.

    If you are a Southern Softie, you can always go over to the continent and pick up cheap booze by the transit load

  98. 98
    Voice of Treason says:

    It’s absolute nonsense that the smoking ban has hit pubs. What has hit SOME pubs is much cheaper alcohol from supermarkets, poor bloody service from surly bar staff, lousy food (or no food at all) and of course rubbing shoulders with obnoxious drunken louts and chavs that the landlords/ladies can’t discipline effectively.

    For all the ranting there is one certain thing – the smoking ban (81% support of public) will remain unaltered and all the squealing from the sputum filled lungs of the smokers will count for nowt!

  99. 99
    Iain Dale's Stunt Codpiece says:

    Both! The difference being that, taken within reason, alcohol only harms the consumer, whereas cigarette smoke harms other people (and is unpleasant anyway).

  100. 100
    Iain Dale's Stunt Codpiece says:

    The fatcat businesses that I referred to are the tobacco manufacturers, desperate to try to maintain the facade that they sell a socially acceptable product. But, since you mention it, the breweries certainly seem to have a lot to do with pub closures – I don’t know anyone who’d want to be a landlord for a brewery owned pub – all those hours for a relative pittance with the brewery taking all the rest – a mug’s game.

    And then of course there is the fact that property prices are so high that pubs etc. cease to be ‘worth it’ for those who own the land – a shame, but that’s the way it is in ZaNuLab Britain.

  101. 101
    God is an Englishman. says:

    Pubs in working class, labour voting areas, were and probably still are, filled with horrid lower class people, covered in tattoos and wearing grimy string vests.
    Best avoided.

  102. 102
    Old dog no tricks says:

    Actually the biggest ever study into passive smoking was conducted (worldwide 11 million subjects) by the WHO and concluded that there is absolutely no evidence that passive smoking has any effect on people ‘subjected’ to its effects. All ‘ingredients’ found in tobacco smoke are found ‘naturally’ or given off by other items (carpets, foam cushions, car exhausts etc etc) in much greater quantites in most environments.

    Needless to say the WHO decided not to publish the final report until it was eventually forced to do so in the USA under their FOE legislation. The propaganda started shortly after this to suggest that the Tobacco companies were behind the report – which was untrue. Their only involvement was to fund the action under FOE to get the report published !

    Needless to say that the UN(WHO) had started out trying to prove the passive smoking link with illnesses but failed – so the report was ignored by the politicians, unlike the UN(IPCC) who issue the climate change reports are unquestioningly followed. It is all about pet projects which people in power get their snotty noses behind – not the facts !

    The fact is that the government (across the EU) have banned a smell which a section of the community do not like. The option to ban or not ban should have been down to individual Landlords – workers/clients could then choose which sort of pub they wished to work in or frequent ! And I can guarantee which would have been the ones closing !

  103. 103
    Sensible Solutions says:

    Most of the casualties of pub closures are caused by greedy pub chain owners who have bled their tenants dry by huge increases in rents, restrictive list of beer and spirits suppliers, ect ect that many of the pub keepers have given up the struggle.The smoking ban was the last straw. In Luxemburg bar owners are allowed to chose between smoking areas or serving food but not both, so there are a choice for smokers and non smoking diners, In Spain if the bar is less than 10 square metres in size the owner is permitted to allow smoking and these are usually busy,

  104. 104
    Old dog no tricks says:

    The cheapest solution is to have smoking/non smoking pubs – then you could go to the dull empty non atmospheric pits of despair – whilst the socially tolerant could get their lively entertaining pubs back !

    As a non smoker (I oppose the smoking ban on the freedom of choice remit) I would choose an old fashioned smoking pub any day over the ‘food pubs’ with runabout brats which infest all area’s these days !

    The only reason the brewery’s went along with the ban without objection (or withholding party funding contributions) was because the ‘rip off soft drink enquiry’ was given the nod to continue – off which they make more % profit than they do on alcohol !

  105. 105
    Old dog no tricks says:

    Leave it out ! This is nothing to do with not wanting to pay tax ! It is about having been sold a bone by the EU which they were never told they would have to pay for ! The whole austerity measures fiasco need to be put to bed by defaulting and letting the banks which funded the overspend reap their rewards just like they did when they were making their profits through ponzi money creation schemes.

    Greece WILL default – it is just a question of how much taxpayers money will be given to the banking community before hand. The whole scheme to ‘bail out’ Greece is purely about reducing the banks liabilities by transferring tax money to the bankers bonus payouts.

    Yes a default will cause hardship in Greece for the people but the sooner it happens the less the impact on the Greek PEOPLE ! The longer they wait the lower the value of the ‘new drachma’ will value at and the harder the recovery.

    They are fooked big time, to carry on will see them fooked fookin’ big time ! Meanwhile the bankers get the tax money meant to serve the Greek people !

    Tell you what – if they accept this bailout, by the time they get to debating the next one we’ll be seeing the Greek politicians dancing on air !

  106. 106
    MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

    I’m just off to make sure a pub doesn’t have to close down !

  107. 107
    Old dog no tricks says:

    This is true – when the great repeal act was more than just an idea the greatest desired bill for repeal was the smoking ban ! Nick (lyin’ b’stard) Cloog stated then that he didn’t want to repeal the smoking ban so it wouldn’t happen !

    After this the great repeal act – flagship policy etc etc etc. has quietly gone down the same sink hole that anything else which was popular with the public has fallen into !

    A year in and they have forgotten all about the ‘service to the people’ which was so public when they got caught with their hands shoulder deep in the till ! Still – they have managed to reform the procedure which was put in place to stop them sticking their hands in quite so deep ! So thats OK then ! Chalk up one success for this ship of fools !

  108. 108
    John says:

    thing is the pubs that are proving successful are those that sell `cask ales` – there are a few round here that are thriving including one that you can have a different beer every night of the year

  109. 109
    Old dog no tricks says:

    Wrong – the number of heart attack has not been affected one iota due to the smoking ban ! Propaganda – it never has been possible to attribute any illness to smoking alone therefore the ‘facts’ are what the propaganda merchants want you to believe in order to further the need for THEM to do SOMETHING – usually to YOU !

    Stop given them excuses to create laws and bans – delight in your freedom !

    Why don’t people get it ? If they do not create problems (when none exist) they have nothing to do ! So they create issues by paying ‘charities’ to discover what they want to be discovered. then they tell us how wonderful they are for ‘addressing the problem’ which few thought was a problem in the first place.

    Oh – and the REAL fact is that since the smoking ban the number of young smokers is increasing year on year – likewise with the ‘age increase’. Ireland found that smoking increased after the smoking ban too – so we are not alone ! But of course the propaganda has to show that the GUMMINT was right once again – because the GUMMINT never get things wrong – do they ?

  110. 110
    Dave may be crap, but I'll still vote for him cos his Tory says:

    Would make a refreshing change, as most Labour constituencies would vote for a pot noodle with a red rosette pinned to it.

    So unlike Tory constituencies then.

  111. 111
    Old dog no tricks says:

    Oh dear ! Obsessive propagandist swallower !

    The 81% figure which is constantly banded around is the number of smokers who say they want to give up ! Not anything to do with supporting the smoking ban. Of course the excuse of ‘helping people give up’ is the most often quoted success story in favour of the ban – but this is simple idiot baiting ! As in – how do you know that these people would not have given up without the ban being in place ? It is more likely to be that they do not go to the pub any more – which is good for their health but bad for socialisation of the populace – which is good for the propaganda merchants who have an x factor dumbed down unaware BBC news type comprehension of the world ! And who does this really help ?

  112. 112
    The Turk's Head says:

    Another reason for pub closures is demographic change.

  113. 113
    Anonymous says:

    Damn right – proper dump full of morons who can’t string a sentence together and vote Labour because “me dad would turn in his grayve if oi didn’t”.

  114. 114
    Alex says:

    Late 80s might have had something to do with a big chunk of under 30s being more interested in popping a pill and drinking water all night at a club / rave than boozing.

  115. 115
    Monica Lewinsky says:

    Ooh me too Mr President, just try and stick it in the right hole next time.

  116. 116
    Alex says:

    Good grief, learn to string a sentence together you fucking simpleton.

    I live within 10 miles of the capital city, and we’ve NEVER had a Labour MP in my constituency, nor any of the neighbouring ones, so sorry, but your little trolling attempt is not only laughable, but it’s also complete bollocks.

    Of course your precious thieving Labour are also going to be in for a rude awakening after a few boundry changes and constituency abolishments take place, which no doubt you think is unfair, as you only believe in democracy if the end result is a Labour win.

  117. 117
    Alex says:

    I think your pot noodle analogy is far too generous – they’d vote for Peter Sutcliffe or the ghost of Fred West if he had a red rosette on.

  118. 118
    Alex says:

    Wasting your words Old dog – Kitsunegari is clearly one of those sad little muppets who is too thick to make their own decisions and thinks that the state will always know best.

  119. 119
    Jim says:

    hang on, I’ll join ya

  120. 120
    The Bottle Fed Triplet says:

    1. Beer is highly taxed and therefore expensive.
    2. It can be bought cheaper from the local supermarket or Calais HyperMart.
    3. Many PubCos have short term management tenancies (5 or 10 years)encouraging numpties to try and run a pub. They often fail as all they want to do is rip you off as they need to make their money in the shortest possible time.
    4. Strict drink driving laws have effectively killed off many pubs in rural areas.
    5. Lots of people in the UK cannot afford to eat out nowadays so pubs that only sell beer cannot make the margins to be profitable.
    6. PubCos tell their tenants what booze to sell and sometimes at what cost price.
    7. Despite what Tessa (or was it Harriet?) said, the Brits have not developed the continental cafe culture she thought would happen spontaneously.
    8. The Labour government kidded us that many establishments could be segregated in to smoking and non-smoking areas. They didn’t keep their promise.

  121. 121
    David Laws Lib Dem fiddler says:

    They also get tax free expenses unlike everyone else; they are exempt from tax loopholes like everyone else; they do not have to attend parliament (place of work) like everyone else; they can put their second job before their primary job unlike everyone else; they can lobby on behalf of interest groups for money unlike everyone else; they can sale secrets of their office under the guise of consultancy unlike everyone else; say what they like about anyone in parliament unlike everyone else.

    Time for right to recall and referendums because the House of Corruption is not fit for purpose.

  122. 122
    Ivor Biggun says:

    Tell that to Roy Castle…

  123. 123
    Voice of Treason says:

    I couldn’t give a fuck about smokers’ health, that’s their problem they know the consequences by now. Regarding the 81% of public not wanting smoking pubs you may be correct – the figure is probably much more than that.

    Remember how the adverts used to portray smoking as sexy? Imagine kissing a mouth that’s coated with green sputum – that’s the reality of a sexy smoker!

  124. 124
    h says:

    muslims don’t drink

  125. 125
    Bazza says:


    But that would mean handing power back to the Little People now, wouldn’t it. Us who can’t be trusted to make the Correct choices for ourselves.

  126. 126
    Mrs E Adams says:

    Not even Wifebeater?

  127. 127
    Steve Norton says:

    The smoking ban is certainly the major factor but when will breweries stop turning pubs into themed or quasi restaurantes with screaming kids and when will breweries allow landlords to stock beers etc that Punters actually want

  128. 128
    Kered Ybretsae says:

    Pubs close because trade falls off and no one comes through the doors. But good pubs survive even though they’re difficult find.

  129. 129
    Ladywood Layabout says:

    Thats the real point. Its not that those constituencies are Labour its that they are the City Centre entertainment districts. A high density of leasehold pubs which close get rebranded and reopen every 3 years anyway. Just they aren’t reopening an longer.

  130. 130
    Anonymous says:

    I expect this is labours fault too

  131. 131
    IED Man says:

    Lung cancer is not exclusive of smokers or those who stay in smoky atmospheres. Just as a child can succumb to cancer of the spleen then someone can develop lung cancer for no reason other than due the cell division that goes wrong. Imagine the billions of cells in your body replicating themsevs each month and all it takes in for one wonky cell to go wrong whilst it divides into say a ling cell or kidney cell and then slip thorough the body’s defences (suicide of the cell) or the other white cell attackers and you are on your way to having cancer.
    I asked my oncologist who BTW was a heavy smoker, is now retired and aged about 85 years, “Why do people get cancer?” His reply was simple and down to earth. “Because we live.”
    As a cancer survivor of 25 years and counting, I detest the way people think there is a reason for people developing it. How many times do you heard the following conversation about someone who is suffering or has died of cancer, “Ohh how awful, and he/she never smoked, drank, was a vegan or vegetarian, I don’t know which and didn’t do anything unhealthy. He/she took cold baths, walked and ran 30 miles a day YET it must have done something to get cancer.” Slightly exaggerated but you get the drift I hope.
    Cancer happens because we live.

  132. 132
    Ping Reece says:

    Roy Castle smoked cigars, Ivor.

  133. 133
    Ping Reece says:

    The ONS consistently asked about support for a blanket smoking ban, and the figure consistently came back at around 33% – ASH surveys came up with the 81% figure but they won’t let you see the study.

    Which do you trust most to give accurate data?

  134. 134
    Glug'a'lug says:

    Short version: Weirdly, the brewers don’t love it.

    Long version: I have worked on the pricing/customer research side of the booze trade and they are getting fornicated with a large stick by the supermarkets.

    The whole thing is a proper feeding frenzy with the brewers being played off against one another by the retailers.

    The supermarkets are making reasonable margin and believe the beer draws in customers to shop other parts of the store (reseach says: Inconclusive… it certainly does bring in a lot of people to load up on cheap beer).

    The brewers tend to make low margins and this is compounded as the headline offers the supermarkets put on – these often canibalise market share from the brewers other, non promoted, products. Some big offers can see a brewer losing money compared to ‘no offer’ situation. The margins are bad, but the revenue can be OK if the offers are structured correctly – they can’t afford to lose that. But it’s not terribly profitable for them.

    On the flipside, pubs are a crapshoot. There is some complex mix of forces at work in the pubs. We’ve researched it somewhat. Behaviour has changed, lot of 20-30 somethings do hit the pubs as frequently as they used to – however many get half cut at home and then hit the pubs a lot later than previously. It’s mostly financial reasons, with an element of smoking ban in there, hard to get straight answers out of people as it’s a complex topic.

    Annecdotaly, have seen groups where a single smoker in a large group can keep the whole group out of pubs and at home – to make them feel more comfortable.

    Unbanning smoking and leaving market forces to do their job would definitely be my preferred answer.

  135. 135
    fjw says:

    Look at any graph on pub closures since July ’07 and note the sharp spikes. The DoH have avoided the issue by hiding behind the ‘Hospitality industry in general’. And the DoH – with 4 full time ASH employees – are required to answer every question under FOI as it’s a health issue.

    The ban is based on the 15% of surveys and reports of SHS that show an insignificant increase in illness with an average of 1.13 RR. The 5% that show a reduced rate and the 80% that show no change are ignored. As far as the APPG is concerned, they never happened.

    It’s bollox, a steaming pile of shit.

  136. 136

    You don’t have to be a MORI pollster to realise that smokers are disproportionally more disposed to be pub-goers than non-smokers. Making pubs more conducive for non-smokers don’t enter into it. This was one of the main planks of the argument in favour of the ban. Well, guess what? They didn’t show up. And the smokers (including me, a twice a week, £1000 a year man) fucked off. Probably forever.

  137. 137
    Merv Coventry says:

    I am a pensioner retired for three years now and would love a part time job to supliment my pension, you could always find part time work in pubs and clubs before the smoking ban. Not ant more.

  138. 138
    paul says:

    yes will alot off non smokers do go to my ex local and sit there with half a lager / glass of wine or coffe for a couple of hours enough said

  139. 139
    chris says:

    Haven’t you heard, Codpiece: “everybody” loves the smoking ban except a tiny mnority of “addicts” and miscreants.
    What do you think it will take to get all those nonsmokers presently cowering like frightened bunnies back to the pubs?

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