Firstly, congratulations to all the shortlisted and winning pubs at last night’s GBPAs. I hope there are many sore heads and smiling faces throughout the industry this morning! Speaking of smiling faces, this week I had the pleasure of meeting with the pub charity organisation, PubAid. We discussed the mammoth amount of work that pubs all over the country do for charity.

PubAid was formed in 2009 with the aim of highlighting the great work done by UK pubs. Which includes raising more than £100m every year for hundreds of charities. They are a working party made up of directors and volunteers, who seek to gain greater appreciation by the media, politicians and other stakeholders, for the positive contribution made by the Great British Pub in local communities across the country.

This week, they teamed up with the BBPA to create a report, presented in Parliament, about how pubs additionally support grass roots sport. Donating around £42m per year in all sorts of ways including feeding and watering teams post-match and providing kit and equipment throughout the country’s local teams. Unsurprisingly, the sport with the most support was football. With 40% of pubs saying they support local teams. Rugby as a whole came in at 14%, cricket at 16% and 30% support pub teams in some way.

You can find out more about the report HERE

The consumer view on the future of UK pubs

As part of Ontrade Outlook, we spoke to 1000 pub/bar goers about their view of pubs, charity and the local community. After all, in my humble opinion, being at the centre of the community is what British pubs do best. Whether it’s raising the aforementioned £100 million per year for charity or just being a friendly and welcoming face to those who pass through their doors. The great British pub has an important part to play in our local communities. 66% of those questioned believe that their local pub engages effectively with the local community. Suggesting that the other 34% are possibly not publicising what they are doing within communities enough? Perhaps the outlets are based in more transient city-centre locations.

The local pub has long been the place for people to congregate to discuss and support community issues. 95% of customers believe that pubs are important in creating a vibrant local community.

I’ve seen so many amazing pub charity initiatives over the years. Whether it’s supporting a customer through a gruelling challenge like the London Marathon or the Great North Run. Raising money for alternative treatment for a sick child of a customer, putting ‘gift boxes’ together for those less fortunate at Christmas. Hosting charity events, meat raffles, pub quizzes, you name it, the local pub has done it.

Sometimes, the simplest solutions are the most effective. On a recent visit to The Firehouse in London, I was pleased to see a ‘tap to donate’ opportunity on the bar. Pictured below, the machine was provided with help from the Mayor of London’s office to help the homeless. This is pub charity in action – simple yet incredibly effective. 

Pub charity in action at The Firehouse London

I think there’s a massive opportunity for brands to link up with pubs to give even more to charity. Any brands out there that would like an introduction to pubs looking for support, please get in touch.

They say charity begins at home, but could it really begin in the pub?

After over 4 months of on and off touring, Mr Katy is home for a while. So this weekend is all about the family. Movie nights, walks (to the pub) and maybe some wine and board games thrown in.

As for Sunday, we’ve recently signed up with ‘Contact the Elderly’ to host afternoon tea for groups of elderly folk. Many of whom don’t see other people for weeks at a time for whatever reason. Have a look here if you’re interested in getting involved- https://lnkd.in/gUePkRx. We’re running our first one this weekend, so wish us luck- should I be getting the sherry in as well as tea?

Have a lovely weekend all- and do keep your emails/comments/reactions to our blogs coming in. It’s always great to hear industry thoughts and opinions!