I was in Dumbarton last week to see my mother. One of the first bits of news she gave me was that Wetherspoons are likely to open a pub in Dumbarton. It would be in the old Woolies Store I remember so well from my childhood. It closed in December 2008 when Woolworths crashed out of business. The next day when the new local paper came out, it confirmed that planning permission was being recommended to the local council.
I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand it will bring real ale back to the town together with much needed competition and vastly improved choice. On the other hand it could damage pub trade in a very depressed town, though fears of that may well be exaggerated. However, if you read the County Reporter, the usual concerns are being trotted out. It was interesting to read JDW's take on this. A spokesman said " "Wetherspoon's has almost 900 pubs across the UK including around 55
in Scotland. We're not aware of any of our pubs causing others to lose
money or close down. In fact, the opposite is true, we encourage people
to come into towns because of our brand, which leads to other businesses
" The pubs in this area are already in competition with each other,
we will be just one more pub to compete against, and it is the
customer's choice where they go."
Now there will be some that disagree with the first paragraph, but surely few can disagree with the second? Photo is from the County Reporter. The main article is here.
A bit of a CV. Tandleman is a veteran beer lover, local CAMRA Chairman and activist, beer writer, beer reviewer and pursuer of all things good in beer. He lives in the North West of England and London. Despite his CAMRA membership, he does not limit himself to cask conditioned beer, though he believes that cask conditioning, when done correctly and appropriately, brings a quality to beer that is hard to equal by any other kind of presentation. He is a strong supporter of Northern methods of beer dispense and avidly detests poorly presented beer and dislikes pasteurisation. He regularly visits Germany, has conducted corporate British and German beer tastings for CAMRA at the Great British Beer Festival where he has worked for years on Biere Sans Frontieres and was Deputy Organiser at CAMRA's very successful National Winter Ales Festival in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 and at the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival from 2013 to date. He admires good brewers wherever they are and has travelled extensively in pursuit of good beer to drink. He also judges beer at both the International Beer Challenge and the World Beer Awards.
This blog mentions specifics; pubs and beer, good and bad. The opinions will be forthright, but you can always disagree, just don't be offended. Comments from those mentioned are particularly welcome and a right of reply is hereby offered.
Read my information and links and then decide for yourself. You don't have to be Sherlock Holmes.
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