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The reputation of the UK licensee: an attempt to offer a balanced view

Pratten, John D. (2006) The reputation of the UK licensee: an attempt to offer a balanced view. International journal of contemporary hospitality management, 18 (3). pp. 260-268. ISSN 0959-6119

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Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to consider the value of the British pub to stakeholders and then to examine how its image can be improved in the light of criticisms of the existing “drinks culture”. Design/methodology/approach – These objectives are achieved by examining already published material relating to the pub as a social centre, an employer and an earner of government revenue. The problems of alcohol and criticisms of licensees are presented and considered in the light of other studies seeking solutions to the problem. Findings – The study suggests that real change will not come from the licensees alone, but by a concerted effort by the majority of society to achieve responsible attitudes to alcohol consumption. Research limitations/implications – The work relies on secondary sources, and would benefit from more studies of the attitudes of the stakeholders. Practical implications – The article looks at the benefits of a responsible licensed trade and shows that criticisms of this trade in general will do nothing to solve the problems of excessive alcohol consumption. That requires a far more concerted movement from the nation as a whole. This does not, however, spare individual licensees from potential criticism for irresponsible service. Originality/value – The paper may offer some comfort to the licensee, who is receiving much criticism at the moment. It may also make the rest of society more aware of its responsibilities.

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