UK pub chain operator and brewer Greene King has shelved plans to sell pints for GBP 0.06p (US$0.07) after a proposed promotion to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee was outlawed.

The discount was originally planned at 408 Greene King venues – with the price reflecting what a pint of beer would have cost at the time of the Queen’s coronation in 1952. However, the promotion was cancelled after the brewer discovered it would have been in contravention of the UK Licensing Act, which forbids the sale of alcohol for less than the price of duty plus value added tax (VAT).

The group said it decided to give pints away yesterday (30 May) for free instead, with customers required to say “1952” at the bar to receive a pint of its namesake IPA.

“Our pub and brewery teams are excited to be celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee with a variety of events this week,” a Greene King spokesperson said. “One of the ideas we had was for a promotion in 400 of our managed pubs where customers could buy one pint each of Greene King IPA for 6p – the same price it was in 1952.

“We thought this was a great way to celebrate this remarkable occasion and we’ve been thrilled at the response from customers. However, we gave the first pint of Greene King IPA away free of charge, as we now understand it’s not permissible under the licensing act to charge the 6p.”

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By GlobalData

Meanwhile, the public holiday weekend in the UK is set to boost the hospitality sector in the country by GBP76m (US$96m), according to the latest quarterly estimates from Barclays SME Barometer.

Almost half (45%) of the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the hospitality and leisure sector that plan to open over the Jubilee weekend are predicting a boost to their sales over the quarter as a result.

The weekend comes amid rising fears that rising inflation could slow the sector’s growth, however, with nine out of ten SMEs reporting concerns about the impact of the rising cost of living on sales. Inflation in the UK was up to a 40-year high of 9% last month.

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