The new era of 'liberalised drinking' began in England and Wales last night, with more than 1,000 pubs, clubs and shops leaping like salmon at the opportunity to sell alcohol around the clock.
Is it just me, or is this a remarkably retarded move so close to Christmas and New Year? A totally unprepared police force will no doubt have to contend with thousands of bloody students and seasonal revellers, at all hours of the night and day, at their busiest time of year.
It’s not gonna affect us here on the river, but we’re a different kind of drinker, we have ‘lock-in’s’ for such things where a select few have our bar stools mopped around and “sorry I’m late dear, I had to wait to leave ‘till the floor dried”. This is a public service providing essential winter warmth and a bastion of real ale and (god fordid) morris dancing. Not a mobile office party of ratted yule revellers throwing their guts up into city centre doorways at 3am.
Today the drink industry spends more than £800m a year encouraging people, especially young people, to quaff. With the state of our National Health Service, perhaps the government should put effort into abolishing such advertising instead of making addictive and harmful substances available 24 hours, thus encouraging the George Best in all of us.
I like my Jameson’s and a decent drop of red as much as the next bloke, but this is surely gonna end in tears.
Late night drink driving anyone?