Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Impact of Pubs Not Small Beer

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Impact of Pubs Not Small Beer

Article excerpt

Byline: Craig Thompson Reporter

RURAL pubs in the North East are the heartbeat of their community, helping inject thousands of pounds into the economy, a new report claims.

For the first time, the positive impact of pubs on rural communities has been measured using a scientific approach.

According to the latest research, the pubs act as a local meeting point and hub for the community to meet and engage with each other.

The report was carried out by Dr Ignazio Cabras, a reader at Newcastle Business School.

He said: "Rural pubs inject between PS80,000 and PS120,000 into their local community and have become community hubs which foster social engagement supporting integration among local residents and newcomers.

"While the impact of rural pubs on the community has long been understood to positively benefit the community, this report is the first time that the direct impact of pubs on the community has been proved."

Pubs across the region have experienced a significant decline in the past two decades, leaving many rural areas without venues which had been open for generations.

Dr Cabras added: "The English rural pub is not simply a place for drink, it has become a hub for the community's infrastructure, offering events, support and friendship.

"Pubs function as physical hubs which foster engagement and involvement among the community, as well as creating jobs for locals and local suppliers."

Anna Taylor is general manager at The Lindisfarne Inn, a 21-bedroom pub with rooms, at Beal, close to Holy Island.

She said: "Pubs are the lifeblood of the areas they are a part of, especially in rural areas like ours here in North Northumberland.

"Many of our customers live in outlying rural areas and isolated farms and use us as a hub to meet with friends, family for pleasure and for business purposes too. …

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