Against the backdrop of a second lost Christmas, several leading figures in the hospitality industry told The Guardian that pubs would fall into even greater financial difficulty unless people kept visiting them during January, the annual month when some people choose to stop drinking.
Kate Nicholls, the chief executive of the trade body UK Hospitality, said: “I think we could definitely dispense with it [dry January].”
She called on people who are trying to avoid alcohol to consider choosing something else at the bar or going out for food.
“This year, there are an awful lot more non-alcoholic options available that are really good quality, so there’s no excuse not to go out and support your local hospitality business.”
Greg Mulholland, the Campaign for Pubs director, echoed Nicholls's call, also stressing the improved availability of non-alcoholic options in the UK’s network of pubs.
“Pubs and publicans will need support throughout January and we’d urge people to continue to go to the pub," he said.
“The pub is about so much more than having a drink, so we hope people recognise the important role pubs play in our communities and get out and support them, whatever they choose to drink and eat.”