A positive Christmas period for our bars and clubs

As a responsible insurer, we’re often accused of only commenting on the ‘doom and gloom’ news. We tend to only speak up when we’re warning our readers about risks, or advising them not to do something.

So for once, we thought we’d pounce on a bit of really good news for the leisure and hospitality industry. It seems, from early indicators, that the Christmas period was a really good one for the country’s pubs and clubs.

We’re reading story after story about YoY sales growth and an increase in the number of pints pulled. Greene King (the chain behind Hungry Horse and Chef & Brewer pubs), for instance, reported a 10.9% increase in sales from 2017.

It was an especially good holiday season for bars, pubs and clubs in Northern Ireland, where 29% of hospitality businesses showed an increase in food and drink sales of more than 10%.

It wasn’t just a good December for alcohol either. Sales in non-alcoholic beer soared as well, up to £7.6m in the UK.

There appeared to be a general spike in the popularity of drink and evenings out as well, with figures showing a move in consumer spending habits from products to food, drink and experience.

All this good news is a shot in the arm for an industry which is having to fend off unfair pressure after unfair pressure. It’s also timely as we head into the insecurity of Brexit year.

It’s important to remember that this positive trend will only continue with proper backing and support of authorities such as the government and local councils.

So enjoy 2019 and remember to show your support for industry bodies such as the NTIA, who are trying to safeguard the future of your business.