A pub has opened in Greater Manchester offering pints of beer for as little as £1.50 – but insists that it does not encourage irresponsible drinking.
The Pound Pub in Atherton, near Wigan, is the second location in a chain of new public houses offering no-frills booze at extremely low prices.
And – despite protests from some locals who prefer a pricier pint – the publican has insisted ‘we don’t encourage people to get drunk’.
Dave Sutton, 31, even says that the new budget drinking model could offer salvation for the British pub at a time when around 18 locals a week are closing across the country.
His pub has been open for around two weeks, and follows the first Pound Pub in Stockon-on-Tees which opened last month. Four types of booze – Fosters, Theakstons, Strongbow and John Smith’s – are on offer there at £1 for half a pint or £1.50 for a whole.
The pub also offers bottles of Becks beer and fruit drink J2O for £1, and pints of Pepsi and R-Whites lemonade for the same price.
However, some residents of Atherton have criticised the Pound Pub for taking advantage of ‘vulnerable’ drinkers and lowering the tone of the town.
The local council has also raised fears that the pub will encourage ‘irresponsible’ problem drinking and threaten public health.
Wigan Council’s director of public health, Professor Kate Ardern, said:
‘Alcohol used to be a luxury, but it is now widely available and often sold at pocket money prices. Research has proved that the cheaper alcohol is, the more people drink.
‘Any promotion which potentially increases the supply of cheap alcohol and which appears to target those on limited incomes, especially young adults, who are cost-conscious, is highly irresponsible – particularly in a borough like Wigan which has high rates of alcohol harm.’
Warwickshire’s Drug & Alcohol Action Team aren’t aware of any ‘Pound Pubs’ being on the agenda for Warwickshire, but if you are concerned about your own or another’s drinking, in Warwickshire you can contact The Recovery Partnership (over 18s) and Compass (under 18s).