New research from leading pub company and brewer Greene King, commissioned ahead of the King’s Coronation, has found that pubs are still seen as the economic and social bedrock of local communities, even as society has changed since the last coronation.
- New research from Greene King shows pubs are still the economic and social bedrock of UK communities, with four in five (82%) Brits saying pubs are important for local communities
- One third (34%) have worked in a pub at some point in their lives, while 64% believe pubs support their local economy
- A quarter of 18-34 year-olds (27%) plan to visit a pub over the Coronation Weekend, continuing the great tradition of celebrating national events in the pub
With many pubs now acting as far more than simply places to drink a pint or grab a bite to eat, Greene King’s research finds that four in five (82%) Brits recognise pubs as important for local communities. Pubs up and down the UK act as centres for local initiatives, fundraising efforts and the home for all manner of teams and groups. While pubs may have evolved since 1953, it is clear that their role at the centre of communities hasn’t changed. And with 58% living less than a mile from the pub, these community hubs remain in reach for a huge proportion of Brits.
Pubs are not only social hubs. 64% of Brits believe pubs support the local economy, while one third (34%) of Brits have worked in a pub at some point in their lives. With over half of those working in the sector under the age of 25, pubs are an invaluable employer of young people offering different career and training opportunities. With 61% of those who have worked in a pub having done so in their local area, it is clear that the sector has a pivotal role in providing good jobs in local communities.
With pubs playing such an important role in UK society, Greene King is calling for more to be done to protect pubs so they can continue to serve local communities for generations to come. This comes as Greene King publishes a new report, Serving King and Country: The Great British Pub at the heart of communities, to mark the King’s Coronation on 6 May. The report looks at the role pubs play in local communities, their social and economic impact, and how they have evolved with society since the last Coronation in 1953.
 Frontier Economics for the British Beer & Pub Association, Impact of recent economic trends on pubs and breweries, November 2022
As the nation prepares to celebrate over the Coronation Weekend, many will be looking forward to meeting friends at the pub. Indeed, a quarter (27%) of 18-34 year olds plan to visit a pub during the bank holiday weekend. The UK has a great tradition of coming together for national moments in pubs, from jubilees to sporting victories, with a third (35%) of Brits having witnessed or celebrated a national moment in a pub. And pubs also continue to play a central role in our day to day lives with 43% of over 18s going to the pub at least once a month.
Punters celebrating in some of Greene King’s pubs will be able to sample a pint of its new Coronation Ale, specially brewed for the occasion. The company has a long tradition of brewing special beers for coronations and jubilees.
Amidst the celebrations, Greene King is urging the Government to look at the future of the British local and how to create a regulatory environment which encourages investment and ensures pubs can continue to serve communities until the next coronation and beyond.
Nick Mackenzie, chief executive of Greene King, said: “Our pubs have witnessed over 200 years of British history and evolved alongside British society over this time. The pub experience in 1953 will be unrecognisable to many of today’s customers and we pride ourselves on creating warm, welcoming spaces for millions of people of all backgrounds. We are now looking forward to welcoming customers through our doors as we come together to celebrate the King’s Coronation.
“The social and economic impact of pubs is undeniable. Alongside the great career and training opportunities available in communities up and down the country, many pubs also provide vital services and act as hubs which support people in their local areas. The range of services, fundraising events and other community programmes organised by our general managers and tenants never ceases to amaze me and I am delighted to be able to showcase a handful of our fantastic pubs and the teams behind them in our new report.
“However, we must not forget that the future of the Great British Pub is far from certain. We have been through some challenging times over the past few years and we cannot afford to take pubs for granted. We need the Government to create a regulatory environment which encourages investment – particularly through fundamental reform of business rates, which represent the highest regulatory cost burden for pubs – to enable us to continue to serve our communities, create jobs and contribute to the country’s economic growth.”
Serving King and Country: Great British Pubs at the Heart of Communities