Saturday, 29 December 2012

Beer Boycott

The rise in the price of beer didn't go down too well with the workers. So much so that some decided to stop drinking beer in protest. Sounds a bit like shooting yourself in the foot to me. Though I could understand why that wasn't always such a bad idea during WW I. Plenty did it to escape the trenches.


A Rhondda Valley miners' meeting has decided to abstain from drinking beer until the present prices are reduced.

The beer boycott continues in the Liverpool district, and it is reported from various quarters that the price is being reduced. A few houses where the old prices still prevail are besieged.

According to a statement issued by the Brewers' Society, the cause of the rise of the price of beer may be explained as follows: The pre-war price of mild ale and porter was 2d per pint in London and most parts of the country. It is now 7d., and the trade claim that it cannot be supplied for less. For every 3.5 pints purchased by the public before the war and for every 2.5 pints purchased up to last month one pint only can now be supplied, so that, quite apart from all other reasons for raising the price, there is the absolute necessity to reduce consumption to that extent. The other reasons include: The increase since the war of the beer duty from 7s. 9d. to 25s. per barrel; the greatly enhanced cost and scarcity of all materials, labour, horsekeep, transport, coal; and the prohibition of all malting."
Coventry Evening Telegraph - Thursday 12 April 1917, page 2.

What you have to bear in mind was that the price of Mild Ale hadn't been 2d a pint for a few years leading up to 1914. It had been the same for 40 or 50 years. Can you imagine that? If you were my age, you'd have been paying the same for a pint the whole of your life. Of course you'd be pissed off if the price suddenly more than trebled.

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