...or rather, the decline of drinking beer in the pub. This post from The Pub Curmudgeon appealed to the boffin in me so the graph below shows the average beer consumption in UK pubs, per annum, from 1997 to 2010 (first two quarters from 2010 only). The reasons for this decline have been well discussed - government taxation, government(s) f#cking up the economy, government scaremongering, press scaremongering, pub companies screwing over tenants, poor landlords, smoking ban, improvements in home comfort and entertainment, etc. But the fact that beer consumption per se hasn't fallen as dramatically suggests that people are simply doing their drinking at home. A ray of hope is that cask ale is just about the only segment in the pub trade that isn't haemorrhaging.
Beer Consumption in UK Pubs 1997-2010. (c) Pubs of Manchester.
I suppose this a major reason why we decided to record the Pubs of Manchester - so many have already have been lost and the remainder may not be around for much longer if the above trend continues. Not because we're p1ssheads / geeks*, you understand.
* delete as applicable