The Good Pub Guide predicts loss of up to 4,000 pubs this year

By Emma Eversham

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Good pub guide, Alcoholic beverage, Cost, Beer

The Good Pub Guide predicts that between 2,500 and 4,000 'bad pubs' will close this year because they are 'stuck in the '80s'
The Good Pub Guide predicts that between 2,500 and 4,000 'bad pubs' will close this year because they are 'stuck in the '80s'
The Good Pub Guide has predicted that between 2,500 and 4,000 pubs will go out of business over the next year because they have failed to keep up with rising standards across the industry.

The editors' introduction in the 2014 edition of the guide, published today, states that 'bad pubs' - those which 'still behave as if we are stuck in the 1980s, happy with indifferent food, drink service and surroundings' - are highly likely to go out of business as customers expect higher standards. 

"This sounds dire, and of course it's bad news for their staff and regular customers, but these are pubs at the bottom of the pecking order," they write. 

However, while bad pubs will inevitably close, they say, those with a strong offering will survive and 'visionary and energetic' landlords are set to breathe new life into old pubs. 

"In this coming year, we expect well over 1,000 new pubs to open - often visionary and energetic new licensees bringing fresh life to former pubs that have been shuttered for months," they said. 

Optimism

The Good Pub Guide, which this year made the Olive Branch at Clipsham, Rutland its Pub of the Year​, also carried out a survey of 'top publicans' and found an overriding optimism about the future of the industry. 

The landlords also gave their top tips for success which include employing the right staff, catering for the market you operate in, ensuring consistently high standards and providing good food. 

They also warned about putting prices too high for fear of losing trade and said there was 'no point' competing against cheap supermarket deals and the lure of home cinema. Instead it was better to offer a point of difference. 

Above all, they said the key to success was offering a warm welcome.

"The key word is hospitality, demanding real warmth and service quality: 'Anyone can do food and drink, but it's what comes with that, that makes the difference'," they said. 

The guide's separate survey of drink prices also found that the average cost of a pint of ale is £3.20 with the growing number of own-brewed beers typically costing 40p a pint less than the local average.

Unsurprisingly London is still the most expensive area for beer while Staffordshire is the cheapest, with a 65p difference in the price of a pint between the two.  

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