View Full Version : Relaxing the Drinking Laws - a 'good' or a 'bad' thing?



Mr T.
10-08-05, 06:17 PM
Lifted directly from the BBC website:


Will new drink laws lead to violence?



http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/40674000/jpg/_40674146_drinking203pa.jpg

Do you agree that violent crime will increase when drinking laws are relaxed?

Plans to relax licensing laws in England and Wales will lead to a sharp increase in violent crime, rapes and serious assaults, senior judges have warned.

The government says varying opening times will stop drinkers from heading home at the same time.

Police chiefs have also voiced concern, saying that the new legislation due to start in November, will lead to a holiday-resort drinking culture.

Do you think the laws will be a recipe for more violence? Or will drinkers heading for home at different times curb bad behaviour? Will it create a more continental drinking culture? Share your views here.

AndrewRawlingson
10-08-05, 06:53 PM
Never replied directly to a Bren post (shivers in fear!), but here goes.

In a society where everyone acts as a responsible adult, I don't think this would be a problem. However, this is clearly not the case in this country.

So I fear that whereas before, you could walk about in town with my children in "relative" safely at 11.00am (knowing the pubs have only just opened), now there could be some [email protected] who's literally just rolled out of a pub having been drinking all night, wandering the streets looking for a fight.

Wel done Tony Bliar. Yet another piece of uneccessary shite legislation.

Dive safe

Darren

(Runs for cover as Bren starts disecting my post sentence by sentence)

Clive W
10-08-05, 06:54 PM
Personally i think it can only be a good thing.

I think the idea that everybody will go home a different times is likely and is bound to cause less friction.
It's got to help with the damn taxi and kebab queue's. :thumbsup:
There will always be a few who are going to exploit it and get completely hammered and cause trouble, but i think that kind of individual is going to cause problems regardless of the drinking laws.
And if it means i can get down a few more pints of Abbot before my local rings the bell, then it definately gets my vote. :beer:

Clive

AndrewRawlingson
10-08-05, 07:00 PM
There will always be a few who are going to exploit it and get completely hammered and cause trouble, but i think that kind of individual is going to cause problems regardless of the drinking laws.

Trouble is Clive, these dickheads you refer to currently cause trouble between, say, 11pm and 3am. Which, yeah, is a pain in the arse for taxis/chippys/emergency services, however for the vast majority of the public who are tucked up in bed, it's not a problem. It will become everyones problem if these idiots can drink anytime during the day/night. Who knows what trouble is going to be caused when they roll out of the pub at 9.00am in the morning into a shopping mall filled with young mothers/children etc.

Alun
10-08-05, 07:10 PM
Why would they roll out of somewhere that was still serving? ;)

hopper
10-08-05, 07:14 PM
It will become everyones problem if these idiots can drink anytime during the day/night. Who knows what trouble is going to be caused when they roll out of the pub at 9.00am in the morning into a shopping mall filled with young mothers/children etc.

Trouble is Darren the state is 'dammed if they do and dammed if they don't' almost. If they don't relax the laws now they are condemmed as a 'nanny state', if they do and allow us to have simular drinking laws that are found in other areas of Europe then they are panned as giving the 'dick-heads' & 'binge drinkers' free reign.

Personally, I welcome it, I think it could well reduce the trouble as CliveRTD said, they are going home at different hours etc. Drinkers are also treated as having more intellegence than Pavlovian Dogs. I have always hated that ringing of the bell and having to run to the bar to get another drink routine.

AndrewRawlingson
10-08-05, 07:14 PM
Why would they roll out of somewhere that was still serving? ;)
You never know, the publican may actually do his job, and refuse to serve them when they are drunk.

On second thoughts, nah, you're right - thats never gunna happen is it! :p

Clive W
10-08-05, 07:32 PM
Who knows what trouble is going to be caused when they roll out of the pub at 9.00am in the morning into a shopping mall filled with young mothers/children etc.
This is a pretty good point, it would probably be better to relax them to something like 6am so there is a least some sort of crossover to clear the streets sort of thing. Most people would not drink till that time anyway?


You never know, the publican may actually do his job, and refuse to serve them when they are drunk.
I also think they really need to penalise places that let people get so obviously way too drunk. There ought to be some sort of 3 strikes and late licence gone system??

Clive

Midnight
10-08-05, 07:53 PM
Well it is about time that the Cromwellian and Munitions Factory rules regarding licensing hours were taken out and dusted off for a good look-see.

I used to be a landlord in one of my previous lives!! and I ran pubs in a city centre, a market town and in the countryside. There seemed to always be a common denominator to drinking in the UK: Pub opens about 17:00 nothing happens untill 21:00 and only 2 hours later people are throwing-up and causing trouble.

I have travelled a bit in Europe and have been living in Ireland for 2 years now. IMHO the problem is not necessarily the amount that is drunk (the Irish could teach us brits a few things!!) but the speed that it is drunk.

Should the laws be relaxed in the UK there will of course be a short period where people will be drinking at the same rate for a bit longer and some of the problems that are being foretold will actually happen for a short while. However, when the majority of them realise that they are missing out on 2 or 3 hours longer socialising with their mates than they will modify their practices.

I am not trying to claim that there is no trouble at all in the rest of Europe and Ireland has recently identified a binge drinking issue, but it is nowhere as widespread and common as it is in England.

You guys ought to also try banning smoking it is a brilliant law that is working well over here!! Hangovers are less painful and you dont wake up smelling like an ashtray.

Regards
Midnight

HelenP
10-08-05, 10:34 PM
Having worked in a busy A&E department on many a Friday and Saturday night I dread to think what it might be like when the law changes. I estimate that probably about 90% of the things I saw on these nights were alcohol related with the majority of that was also violence related. At least though we knew that after the pubs closed that things may quiet down a little bit. Hopefully the law change will mean that because everyone is not leaving the pubs/ clubs at the same time that there will be less violence as there will be smaller numbers congregating in town centres after closing time, but I am far from being convinced that this will happen.

John N
10-08-05, 11:39 PM
I don't think it will create a continentalesque cafe society - we don't have the infrastructure, culture or weather.

It seems though that 9 out of 10 bars are only applying for an extra hour or two.

Besides that, could it get any worse?

The problems we have at the moment involve people cramming as much down their neck for a couple of hours and ending up violent and falling over.
If we give them all night to drink, can they get any more violent or fall over any more?

Will it encourage people who don't do that at the moment to suddenly decide it's a good idea?

It might get a bit worse for a while, but then I think the novelty will wear off and things might even improve as people 'stagger' their leaving times.

Mr T.
11-08-05, 02:12 AM
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/graphics/2005/08/11/matt.gif

Mark Davies
11-08-05, 09:57 AM
I haven't made my mind up on this topic.

I think John is right about us not developing a continental cafe culture. We Brits have an entirely different attitude to going out drinking - just look at how the 18-30 brigade behave overseas!

I don't see quite how it could make things any worse than it currently is. People are already getting dangerously drunk in their hoardes in every major city centre every weekend. If they're legless by 2.00am they're going to be no worse at 4.00am. It would at least stop everyone spilling out onto the streets at the same time, which is the main cause of most of the trouble. There is no more dangerous place in the world than the queue at a taxi rank in Manchester at 2.30am on a Saturday morning!

I think it needs tighter controls with the current legislation, and licensees need to be more responsible. It is already an offence for them to sell alcohol to someone who is drunk. If the law was strictly applied we just shouldn't have all these drunken and violent people on our streets. It's a trade-off - relax the restrictive trading laws but be more vigorous with the controls and come down hard on those who are selling alcohol to those who've clearly already had enough.

kevFISH
11-08-05, 10:58 AM
One 'angle' that has rarely been mentioned is the fact that we Brits (or is it mainly the English - I'm not sure?) are almost obsessed with siting in pubs/bars/etc. One of the cultural things we are missing is socialising at home - at least to a larger degree. Why is this?? :confused:

I've long been of the opinion that cheaper 'home sales' would encourage this. At the moment the difference between going out and staying in is nowhere near big enough (if you compare it to Germany/France) - so why bother inviting people round when there's someone else to tidy up etc.

Will these new laws change anything - only time will tell, but it certainly won't encourage people to have a quiet drink at home :sad:

dry suit diver
11-08-05, 11:10 AM
One 'angle' that has rarely been mentioned is the fact that we Brits (or is it mainly the English - I'm not sure?) are almost obsessed with siting in pubs/bars/etc. One of the cultural things we are missing is socialising at home - at least to a larger degree. Why is this?? :confused:

I've long been of the opinion that cheaper 'home sales' would encourage this. At the moment the difference between going out and staying in is nowhere near big enough (if you compare it to Germany/France) - so why bother inviting people round when there's someone else to tidy up etc.

Will these new laws change anything - only time will tell, but it certainly won't encourage people to have a quiet drink at home :sad:

what pubs in walthamstow do you drink in then , the Bell aint cheap and neither is the Dog on Chingford Road.
Tesco pile it high and sell it cheap but at present when I do the Xmas shopping at 2am I cannot buy the alcohol and have to go back during the day incresing queues at the checkout and the carpark ( go to Leytonstone tesco on a sunday and multiply by ten what you see and this will give you an impression of Xmas shopping in the daytime.

its much the same at last orders a scrum at the bar where tempers fray and the seeds of trouble are sown.
Maybe for a few months trouble will increase but if you dont change the laws you will never know.

Conor
11-08-05, 11:18 AM
I think it will get worse before it gets better.

Its not going to change overnight, there will be people going out with the same attitudes to pubs that stay open longer so I would expect there will be more trouble for the first few months.

After that time I hope people will start to change the way they behave to fit in with the new culture, this may mean people drinking slower etc, or leaving when they are ready to go home etc which should lessen the aggro.

On the other hand the doormen are going to have their hands full, as the onus will be on them to prevent piss-heads from bar A getting into bar b. At the moment this isn't too much of a problem, as they can just say they have stopped serving, when this arguement is removed it will be more difficult to keep them out.

Roobydoo
11-08-05, 11:19 AM
The vast majority of pubs probably won't even apply for 24hr licences. Extensions to maybe 3am are (IMHO) much more likely. Unfortunatley, as has already been posted, this country will not adopt a cafe bar mentality. I spent many years in Germany with HMF, and it was good that the evenings out started about 10pm as there was no end limit.

Even though we still ate, drank and made merry, (in true HMF styleee) it was still much more relaxed than the atmosphere over here. There are too many people who decide to power-sup before 11pm. These are exactly the same people who will do the same, no matter how long the bar extensions go on for.

I think it is too much to expect that the "pain" of kicking out time will be lessened by a longer drinking period - these idiots will still be idiots. It just provides a little more choice for the majority.

On saying that, I very rarely venture into a city centre at the weekends, but to have the option of later hours in my village local is appealing.

Steve

dry suit diver
11-08-05, 11:20 AM
I think it will get worse before it gets better.

Its not going to change overnight, there will be people going out with the same attitudes to pubs that stay open longer so I would expect there will be more trouble for the first few months.

After that time I hope people will start to change the way they behave to fit in with the new culture, this may mean people drinking slower etc, or leaving when they are ready to go home etc which should lessen the aggro.

On the other hand the doormen are going to have their hands full, as the onus will be on them to prevent piss-heads from bar A getting into bar b. At the moment this isn't too much of a problem, as they can just say they have stopped serving, when this arguement is removed it will be more difficult to keep them out.



They can still say they have stopped serving, the entertainment licence is different from the licence to sell alcohol.

jamesp
11-08-05, 11:23 AM
Licensing hours were relaxed to allow 11 until 11 drinking several years ago. The world still appears to be turning.

When I was 18 and first started going out 'round town' you were in town by 8, a club by 10.30 and out on your ear by 2.05. The pubs shut at 11 (10.30 sundays), 2 pubs had 12 midnight licenses. The pubs also shut at 2pm and opened at 7 (pm). Yep fights all over the place, but not as bad as 30 years previouslly when this was a mining town, with a steel works and a barracks!

Now most of the bars have 12am licenses, several have 2am liscenses, if you are in town before 9, your early. its more relaxed, if it does not feel relaxed there is trouble brewing, so to speak. It s still supposed to be the wild west, but I recall it being worse with far fewer people around(big student population now, I'm talking 18 years here). The drunken arseholes are still around, generally they tend to be arseholes when they are sobber as well, nothing changes in that respect. Doormen now are not the old local phsyco crowd, policing is less than it used to be (cctv on every street in town).

Trouble is we still have a drinking culture, not a socialising one, it is still viewed as the thing to do to go out and drink 10+ pints amongst a lot of men, the women are just as bad(usually bottle of vodka in the handbag). So a european cafe culture? I cant see that happening.

It should be remembered that liscensing hours were a WW1 invention to prevent workers rolling up to the munitions factories drunk. Just makes you wonder how far we have come along.

Conor
11-08-05, 11:26 AM
They can, if they have.

If you have a group of guys who have been sitting down in pub A for a few hours, getting their more sober mates to buy the beer etc, then they decide to go to pub B which they know serves a bit later. It will be the doorman at the latter pub who has to persuade them to alter their plans.

Simply put, the pubs that stay open are going to have to prepare to get groups turning up as and when other places close.

I used to work the door in SU bars and clubs in West London, it was the people who arrived at the door after 11:20 having been kicked out form elsewhere that were the hardest work.

dry suit diver
11-08-05, 11:33 AM
They can, if they have.

If you have a group of guys who have been sitting down in pub A for a few hours, getting their more sober mates to buy the beer etc, then they decide to go to pub B which they know serves a bit later. It will be the doorman at the latter pub who has to persuade them to alter their plans.

Simply put, the pubs that stay open are going to have to prepare to get groups turning up as and when other places close.

I used to work the door in SU bars and clubs in West London, it was the people who arrived at the door after 11:20 having been kicked out form elsewhere that were the hardest work.


yeah tell me about it but the place In used to work the door on had a last admittance time of 10.55 with the place being close to permitted numbers by 10pm. maybe this will change with the new laws but it wouldnt take much for all the clubs with a late licence to have a monthly forum meeting like the LVA do for publicans.
Of course you also have the pubwatch solution and at least 3 clubs in one town have a radio link between them to inform of potential trouble heading their way.

Its gonna be a suck it and see sitution for a few months.

Roobydoo
11-08-05, 11:34 AM
The drunken arseholes are still around, generally they tend to be arseholes when they are sobber as well, nothing changes in that respect.
Except these days, the tendency appears to be to start trouble with less provocation, and it is likely that weapons will make an appearance..:(

Gogs
11-08-05, 02:02 PM
There is no more dangerous place in the world than the queue at a taxi rank in Manchester at 2.30am on a Saturday morning!

Glasgow!



We already have 24hr drinking here in the UK. Go to any supermarket and the cost of booze is cheap. Folk can fall out of the club at 3am and head home to go on the sauce till any hour in the morning. Will people still be willing to pay 2.50 upwards for a drink at 4am when they can be in their house at that time with a bottle of Morgans they got from Tescos for less than a tenner??



gogs

Balders
11-08-05, 09:29 PM
As usual this government has got its head up its arse!
They are targeting the completly wrong area.

On the estate where i live there are Asian shopkeepers who are quite willing to sell booze to kids.

Gangs of them hang around the shops drinking vodka and wine, fighting, throwing up and causing mayhem. Some of these kids are as young as 10.

So by the time they are old enough to get into a pub they are already hardened drinkers ready for trouble.

The laws on off-licence sales should be tightened and hit squads should be assembled roaming the streets with the power to close these shops down on the spot.

Keep the kids off the booze and they may grow up a bit more responsible thats what i say.

Midnight
13-08-05, 10:39 PM
The drunken arseholes are still around, generally they tend to be arseholes when they are sobber as well, nothing changes in that respect.

Amen to that comment. Same as a gun..... It is a useless piece of metal untill it becomes attached to some moronic carbon based(aledgedly) lifeform. Likewise alchohol, in its many guises, can be a very pleasant and tasty drink untill it gets into the wrong hands of the wrong brain!!!

Regards
Midnight

mark g
15-08-05, 12:43 AM
if it comes down to facts and figures 90% of my sex life is alcohol related, er indoors always takes advantage if i am intoxicated

Mr T.
15-08-05, 03:21 AM
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/graphics/2005/08/14/matt.gif

chrisch
15-08-05, 07:37 AM
On the estate where i live there are Asian shopkeepers who are quite willing to sell booze to kids.

Gangs of them hang around the shops drinking vodka and wine, fighting, throwing up and causing mayhem. Some of these kids are as young as 10.


Yes. What an embarassment it is to be part of a society where 10 year old kids feel the need to get pissed. Someone will always be there to sell them booze, fags, drugs whatever - what ethnicy are the kids Balders?

Perhaps if booze was not seen as "forbidden" but as part of ordinary family life as it is on the mainland... Wine with meals etc... perhaps not...

Why are young people not allowed in pubs? Why can't they have a soft drink and a game of "babyfoot" like they do in France? Why do the Brits drink themselves (even more) stupid at every opportunity?

As to the original question - I don't know lets wait and see.

Chris

Mr T.
29-08-05, 03:44 AM
24-hour pub texts 'stupid' - Jowell
By Toby Helm, Chief Political Correspondent
(Filed: 29/08/2005)

Tessa Jowell, the Culture Secretary, has condemned as "stupid" a Labour attempt to attract young voters with the promise of 24-hour drinking in pubs and clubs.

Miss Jowell said text messages sent out during the 2001 general election urging first-time voters to support Labour because it would scrap traditional pub closing times were too flippant.

They were "not the finest hour of Millbank's marketing whizzes" she said.

The text message said: "Don't give a XXXX for last orders? Vote Labour."

Miss Jowell rebuked Labour's spin doctors, led at the time by Alastair Campbell, Tony Blair's former director of communications and strategy. "I thought that was a stupid slogan at the time, and I still do,'' she said.

"It portrayed what is in fact a serious piece of legislation intended to improve quality of life and curb crime as some kind of advert for hedonism."

Her admission comes amid mounting criticism from chief police officers, doctors and judges who believe that the new rules, which come into effect in November, will lead to more late night unruliness, drunkenness and alcohol addiction.

Defending the main thrust of the legislation, which is strongly opposed by the Tories, Miss Jowell told The Independent on Sunday: "What the new law does is allow people to drink alcohol in public at a different range of times, with the threat of instant sanction if they misbehave."

Theresa May, for the Tories, said Miss Jowell should not only admit the slogan was "stupid" but also realise that the new rules would lead to more binge drinking.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/stylesheets/portal/images/line_334.gif

Scuba Monkey
29-08-05, 07:19 AM
next thing, students will be demanding a raise in grant money to help offset the cost of 24 hour pub opening ;)

Steve Robinson
29-08-05, 09:50 AM
As a licence holder I see little of benefit in the new laws.

I know a place (no names no pack drills) that ahem, has a "relaxed view" of licencing hours (no, it is not my establishment). The fact that the local scumbags know that they can drink 'till late attracts them in droves causing a menace to the locality. Legalising this will do nothing to stop the problem.

At the moment, the Magistrates and the Police have a good idea of what is going on, where the trouble spots are and whom should or, should not hold a Liquor licence. I am not convinced that handing the whole thing over to the civil service will add value.

Also, from a business point of view, the new act adds masses of red tape with its associated costs.