I didn't know whether to laugh or cry at a recent report in a local newspaper. It was in relation to wedding guests, sneaking in drinks, at wedding receptions.
At the outset of the article, I had a tad of sympathy for our 'beleaguered hoteliers'. I thought, perhaps a bit of a liberty to sneak booze into the various venues in the locality.
However, when I found out how much they were charging guests, my sympathy soon became non existent. Five quid for a pint of lager - are you taking the p**s!
I fully understand there's always going to be a mark up on beer prices at a 'swanky - or not so swanky' venue. But, £4.50-£5 for a pint of Carlsberg or Heineken is bang out of order. No wonder guests are sneaking in booze.
Let's put things in perspective here. You can buy an eleven gallon barrel of Carlsberg down at the local Bookers for eighty-five quid. Eight-eight pints purchased for less than a quid.
OK, I'm fully aware of the costs related to the running of such a venue. However, how the hell can you justify charging up to a fiver, for a pint of basic strength, fizzy pop!
In contrast, a friend of mine attended a wedding reception, at a venue in the Ribble Valley. The Calf's Head at Worston. A delightful pub/restaurant, with an excellent reputation for cask ales and fine cuisine. They were charging wedding guests £3.05 for a pint of cask ale.
No mark up for the reception, just charging a fair price for their guests. I reckon they would have paid about seventy quid for a NINE gallon barrel. So, my maths tell me they would have paid a similar price per pint, than the price paid at Bookers. Possibly more, as the hotelier may have got it even cheaper through a regular supplier.
So, you hoteliers, stop your whinging about guests sneaking in booze to your venue. If you charge a fair rate for beer, let's say £3.50, guests will be less likely to do a bit of smuggling! Five quid for a pint is unacceptable - and no doubt you charge extortionate prices for shorts and soft drinks.
Aye, the report in the Lancashire Telegraph, ended up raising a titter, at the squealing hoteliers, moaning about their 'sneaky' guests. No sympathy for you I'm afraid to say.
Now where's my Karrimor rucksack. I'm attending a wedding reception, at a local hotel, at the weekend! ;-)