Author Topic: Responsible (?) alcohol sales - Old Town Nightclub flouts conventional wisdom  (Read 2460 times)

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Offline Alex

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It seems that, yet again, Swindon lags behind the current thinking on how to improve communities and to reduce the associated  risks  to it and our younger members with regard to binge drinking ....

Today, through my letterbox arrived a large red invitation to "Saturdays@ studio" in Old Town for over 18's

FREE ENTRY and 50p drinks all night! ( 9pm till 2 am)

I fail to see anyone in the chain from licence granting to ownership of the premises to sales of the alcohol being in any way, shape or form "responsible" - clearly the only thing they care about is money.

I predict cirrhosis numbers increasing exponentially >:(



Offline Alligator

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If anything, it's not Swindon that lags behind, it's the management of this particular bar.  I don't think you can blame those people that grant licences either as they only go as far as granting the licence and setting the hours the licence applies.  They don't set the prices and offers or any rules on how the place is run.

The one overriding thing here for me is that this offer is open to over 18s, i.e. people who are supposed to know thier own minds enough to take responsibilities for their actions and the consequences.  I think this country is going too far down the road of 'government knows best' which seems to be seen as a reason for regulating what people can or can't do

I certainly wouldn't want to see government stepping in to stop, or try to control, people drinking.  They're already a bunch of control freaks but you have to ask how would they do that? increase tax on alcohol?, they already tax it heavily anyway and why should everyone pay extortionate prices in order to save those people that can't do anything in moderation?  Even worse, what this government do with the money they raise? 

The fact is that the way we, the British, view alcohol is down to our culture, it's ingrained in our way of socialising, this won't change overnight whether the price of alcohol or the availabilty of it changes. Limited drinking hours, with last orders at 11pm, came about, I believe (may be wrong) during WWI when the government decided that people were spendng too long in the pubs and not enough time making bombs.  This probably brought about the birth of binge drinking by limiting the number of hours people could drink so they filled their boots and got rat arsed. Nearly 100 years later, these rules have changed, but changing the way people go out, where they go, the time they go out and the speed they drink will take longer to change.

I don't have any answers and I can only speak for what I choose to do, but that's it, it's what I choose, not what anyone else tells me I am allowed to do.  I think I would like it to stay that way.


Offline Mart

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I think Central government sets the fee for licences, but there were rumours that they were going to devolve this to local authorities and allow them to not only do the approving or otherwise, but also set the price of a licence / application. It was openly touted as a means to generate additional revenue. So that is a lever that could be yanked, haven't really thought beyond that yet, it's all if, but and maybe anyway.

Any establishment flogging alcohol at 50p a shot is serving what purpose exactly? How about 50p a shot if you're over 30, wouldn't work would it? It's aimed at 'kids' who are the least well equipped to deal with the temptation, you could, at a stretch, liken it to drug sealers selling their product at a loss to establish a habit and a need and expand their customer base.

50p a pop does not encourage moderation, I would argue it does not encourage harmless excess, it encourages harmful excess and the imbibers will roll out in the mood for punching each other and drop kicking wing mirrors all the way home, nice.

Make drunk and disorderly a misdemeanour on par with speeding, enforce it with the same resources and enthusiasm, bring back the communal drunk tank and fine repeat offenders back into the stone age, mind you at 50p a pop it's not going to deprive them of too much is it.

For the record, I am an enthusiastic drinker and think pubs serve a pretty important social function in their communities, 50p a pop alcopop and vodka redbull pumping stations, I'm not so sure.

Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Tobes

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Limited drinking hours, with last orders at 11pm, came about, I believe (may be wrong) during WWI when the government decided that people were spendng too long in the pubs and not enough time making bombs.

Absolutely true. I also agree that eventually things will flatten out. We should be encouraguing the cirrhossis in the interests of Darwinism and natural selection!

My problem with the Studio's 'chav friendly' drinks promo is the sheer amount of damage, vandalism and violence occurring in the streets of Old Town recently... and where have all these slacks and hilfiger shirt wearing gangs been boozing when they stumble home, kicking off wingmirrors and bending car arials? Not down the Beehive or at the Victoria...

Rather than new nanny-statism controls over the chavs, I'd like to see proper policing and proper convictions for a start. Maybe that could be topped off by a fine to any premises frequented by these idiots on the evenings of their drunken crimes?

It seems bizarre to me that a poorly shaved ape on the door (a legal requirement!) can stop people from getting in for 'not wearing the right clothes' as though that was some sort of arbitor for responsibility - when almost 100% of the late night crime is being committed by sharp-dressed thugs awash with WKD and lager.

I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

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I think that charging 50p a drink is probably just about going to allow them to break even so probably doesn't make any busness sense either.  However a large part of the issue here isn't so much that they're charging 50p a drink, but that 50p is so much cheaper that the prices usually charged elsewhere for similr alcopop drinks.  It will therefore encourage binge drinking, I don't doubt that.  I also have little doubt that it will attract a particular type of person.

In my view it's these people that are the problem, they're a painful carbunkle of the arse of society. 

You only have to look at the approach to alcohol in other countries and you will see that their more relaxed approach to alochol has created a society of social drinkers, who are happy to stop after a few beers and go peacefully on their way.  They also pay less for the pleasure.

As I see it, we've all been a part of a large social experiment that's lasted nearly 100 years, first they limited the hours, then they raised the tax, then they raised the tax and then they raised the tax, then, after raising the tax a few hundred more times, they decided to move us all into the next stage where price seems to have no bearing on what people will drink, so they relaxed the hours and pack as many bars into each town as possible to create competition.  I believe that, eventually, we will see the Vicky Pollards and their boyfriends that go to the Studio die out and a new generation of drinker will come along having grown up in a society where drinking as much as possible in as short a time as possible seems as alien as smoking on a London Underground train in rush hour does now (at least that seems alien to me!).

I would like to see those that think being drunk is a reason to twat a few wing mirrors on their way home dealt with quickly by a police force that takes these issues seriously, with fines and full costs being met by the morons, not the tax payer.  It's the lack of policing on this that makes me think that vigilantes have a moral right to take to our streets.  :knuppel2:

I live in hope.

Offline Alex

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I would like to see those that think being drunk is a reason to twat a few wing mirrors on their way home dealt with quickly by a police force that takes these issues seriously, with fines and full costs being met by the morons, not the tax payer.  It's the lack of policing on this that makes me think that vigilantes have a moral right to take to our streets.  :knuppel2:

I live in hope.

I can't complain about the police response when I reported the wing mirror incident,  they kindly suggested they spend time interviewing neighbours to see if anyone heard or saw anything. I suggested they don't waste thier limited resources because 2 policemen who actually caught a group of 6 of the little "£$$%^s red handed inthe act of vandalising a car were unable to get a prosecution due to lack of evidence( they were all dressed the same so the 2 actual perpetrators couldn't be identified specifically out of the group of 6)!
This suggests that the legal system requires some re-evaluation. It was and remains, an ass.  :uglystupid2:

Back to the drinking though- it does fell just as though Columbian drug delaers are just grooming a new customer base, but
I like the natural selection thinking- I feel slightly uplifted.

May it last.

Offline Alligator

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I can't complain about the police response when I reported the wing mirror incident,  they kindly suggested they spend time interviewing neighbours to see if anyone heard or saw anything. I suggested they don't waste thier limited resources because 2 policemen who actually caught a group of 6 of the little "£$$%^s red handed inthe act of vandalising a car were unable to get a prosecution due to lack of evidence( they were all dressed the same so the 2 actual perpetrators couldn't be identified specifically out of the group of 6)!

Alex, I don't know how you could take such a calm approach. 

Ask yourself how many times you've been the victim of a crime that gave rise to calling the police.  I would hope that it's no more than once or twice in the last few years and that's if you've been particulalry unlucky.

What they suggested is exactly what they should be doing when you fall victim to crime, it's not a 'waste' of resources, it's what they're there for and they should have done it anyway, that's what YOU have been paying taxes each and every year for them to do.

To say that the police investigating a crime like this one, perpetrated against you, is a waste of resources has indirectly sent a message to the police that spending time investigating any similar crime isn't viewed by Jo Public as being significant. I'm sure they'll be quick to put those resources elsewhere.  It's clearly not a waste of resources, it was your right to have those resources directed towards helping you.

Offline Alex

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I reported it so that the stats show the reality of the situation but having called the police about 5 times in the last year for various crimes and knowing they couldn't get a conviction even though they had cctv footage of one burglar presenting my cheques in a bank in Bristol, I felt it was pointless for them to obtain what is simply "hearsay" from neighbours- what would it achieve? The outcome is the same. Nothing- because the legal system prtects the criminal.

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Well I think it's a real shame that this is what our society has come to.  We all pay for a service and then, every once in a blue moon when we call upon it, we find it to be of little help.

Crime statistics are one thing, but all they serve is to ensure that your insurance company has a reason t raise your premiums.  There doesn't seem to be ay other use for them and they don't seem to result in more police or the poice focussing their resources on high crime issues.

I still find it unbelieveable that the police felt the need to ask you if they should knock on doors.   

Anyway, sort of moving back to the point of the thread, I'd like to bet that the management of these bars would be very quick to cal upon the plods to help them evict any troublemakers from their premises and would probably go as far as to press charges for any damage they cause to their property, even after they sold the alcohol in the first place.  If they can make full use of the legal system, why shouldn't the innocent bystanders who just happen to live nearby.   :censored:

Offline trevg

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I don't think anything is going to improve until we get a change of gov't.
The time when the new laws were going through a while back anybody with any sense and experience new what would happen- including the bar owners..but they are in it for the business angle naturally enough.
What is  appalling is the, now remorseless, decline of respect from the yobs who spoil the large majority of  ordinary revellers' fun- and the paucity of police resources out there to 'keep the peace' for decent people.
They have a lousy job to do sitting in the middle for sure.
It will take years to get the balance back-even with right effort - and I agree that nanny (more like 'billy goat') state stepping in is not what people feel they need generally.
That would just feed the already ravenous beast.
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Offline Tel Hudson

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I am not an apologist for this stinking Government but in this case the relaxation in the drinking laws is not to blame. Overall there has been a reduction in drink related crime. There has been an increase in crime at 2 am but this has been more than offset by the drop at 11 pm.

The trouble has been long brewing and it won't be solved quickly. What this Government did wrongly was to look at the experience of other countries and declare that relaxing licensing hours will reduce crime and then go on to say that this will solve the problem. It may help but by itself it can do very little.

Here is a suggestion that would solve a lot of problems. Put a differential tax on different types of drink. Tax lager heavily. All other drinks should be taxed on both their sugar as well as their alcohol content. This would then get rid of the alcoholic drinks designed for children.  There are some anomalies such as Benedictine and Port but I'm sure these could be solved.
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