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It seems incredible to me that in this day and age we British still clung to some crazy law for so long that was introduced during the war to prevent factory workers from drinking too much the night before and then not being fit to work with the munitions in the morning. The pub opening times aren't as bad as they used to be but so many bars still close at 11 O'Clock, purely because it's not worth their while staying open any later.
Getting a late licence isn't exactly easy and the unfortunate thing is these restrictions probably play some part in the tide of antisocial behaviour that sweeps our cities each night around 11 or 12 O'Clock. Drunken yobs that have been on a booze binge fighting, urinating in doorways, messing the place up with discarded takeaway food etc. As well as not being pleasant to see, this also puts a huge strain on various public services. With all this going on, who would want to work in the police force or in the casualty department of a hospital on a weekend?
I think that relaxed licensing hours and making it easier for pubs to get a licence to close later could help ease this problem. Instead of spending an absolute fortune each year on hospitals and policing each year the government could be raking in millions of pounds in extra tax as well as creating a more continental environment for tourists that visit the country.
What do the French, Italians or even the Americans think about our pubs?
There's another point I'd like to bring up. Why is the average price of a pint of beer in British pubs climbing through the roof every where you go these days? I remember when I were a lad (not really!), you could get a pint of ale in almost any pub for a pound and some loose change, enough for a packet of crisps to go with it. Even a pound was was considered expensive by some of the older people in the pubs that I used to frequent. I wonder what they would think now...
At the rate we are going I reckon it will pretty soon be normal to pay 4, 5 or more for a pint of beer and by the year 2020 it is likely that that will be more than a tenner(or the equivalent in euros if that's what we are using by then!). I just wish the government would stand behind the traditional British pub and see it for what it is, a great focal point for our communities and one that is sadly starting to become extinct.