Earlier this week England played a football match. They also won that football match, which made people start celebrating in such a ferocious manner you'd think they'd won the entire World Cup with that single winning goal. The police had to be called where I live, and I still can't work out whether it was because people had decided to celebrate by fighting or not. What we do know, however, is that winning the match was good for the country's many pubs.
According to preliminary stats from payment processing company Worldpay, pubs experienced a 42 per cent increase in sales following Monday's game. While the stats only seem to mention the UK as a whole, I imagine the rise will only have been in England. I can't imagine the Scottish, Welsh, and Northern Irish would be celebrating quite so hard after an English victory.
The same stats claim that the World Cup has caused pubs to be 25 per cent busier than normal, and that every 90 minutes England spends on the field is worth £3.5 million to pubs up and down the country. Presumably people want to be able to watch football, drink, and not risk damaging their own homes in the drunken aftermath.
Steve Newton, Executive Vice President, UK and Europe of Worldpay said:
"Football fans are not the only ones celebrating England’s win; pub landlords up and down the country also scored big as supporters splashed out on pies and pints during England’s clash with Tunisia. The World Cup will be a welcome windfall for the sector, with landlords across the UK set for one of the busiest months of the year. Business owners looking to cash in on the football frenzy will be hoping England avoid an early exit, with every 90-minutes of play worth £3.5 million to pub operators."
Is anyone surprised, though? Football is seen as a very big deal in this country, for reasons I can't quite fathom, and given the amount of money you have to pay for tickets, shirts, TV subscriptions, and everything else, it's hardly a surprise that the biggest footballing tournament has also led to an increase in spending. But good for the pubs, I guess. There are way too many abandoned ones in my area, so if the football helps them keep running then that's one less building sitting around abandoned and unused. [CLH]