Cheers: watching the royal wedding at the Lifeboat Inn, St Ives
The Treasury is set to be on the receiving end of a £70m windfall following a successful trading weekend in Britain’s pubs.
With licensing hours on Friday and Saturday extended by two hours from 11pm to 1am for the royal wedding, along with the FA Cup final taking place on Saturday evening, an extra £20 million is expected to have been spent in pubs across the nation on ‘Super Saturday’ alone.
Beer and food are believed to have benefited most from the bumper weekend, with food sales predicted to have increased by 8% — generating £16 million for the Treasury through VAT — and beer sales predicted to have increased by 5%, resulting in more than 100 million pints being poured over the weekend, generating £54 million for the taxman through duty and VAT.
Brigid Simmonds OBE, chief executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, said: “The royal wedding was a fantastic spectacle, with the Great British pub providing the perfect place for the nation to celebrate.
“The relaxed licensing hours were welcomed by pub-goers looking to make the most of the historic occasion, whilst providing a real boost to the pub trade. Given that a third of the price of a pint in a pub goes straight to the taxman, the Chancellor will also be celebrating.”
Lucy Longworth, general manager of The Lifeboat Inn, in St Ives, Cornwall, said: “We had a really good turnout for Meghan and Harry’s wedding, with tables full throughout the day.
“We showed the wedding from 10am, followed by football at 5pm, and then had a band to celebrate the wedding from 9pm. Many people stayed on for all three events, which was great. Our bar sales increased by 50% on the previous Saturday.”