Beer sales in the third quarter of 2018 were up 4.4% on the same period in 2017, according to the latest Beer Barometer sales data from the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

Pubs in particular benefited from the much-needed boost, enjoying their first third quarter growth in more than 15 years, with sales increasing by 0.9%.

This increase in sales was driven by the success of England at the World Cup, which saw the national team reach the semi-finals of the tournament, driving footfall in pubs where fans watched the games.

It was also driven in part by the good weather over the summer months, which encouraged people to visit their local and enjoy the pub garden.

In the off-trade, beer sales in the third quarter of 2018 went up by 7.6% on the same period in 2017.

Although the World Cup was a welcome boost to pubs, it only comes around once every four years. This means pubs cannot rely on it for growth.

BBPA chief executive, Brigid Simmonds, said: “It’s certainly good to see that beer sales are doing better overall. England’s success at the World Cup and good weather undoubtedly helped.

“The Chancellor’s decision in the Budget to freeze beer tax and lower business rates for thousands of pubs will make a huge difference to the viability of the sector moving forward, but Brexit looms large though and brewers and publicans alike need certainty.

“Clarity on the transition period from March 29 onwards and a strong steer on the future relationship with the EU would be a boost to the trade and beer sales. A no deal Brexit should be avoided at all costs.”

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