Saturday, 15 May 2010

Due South

Paul Heaton from the Beautiful South is doing a three week 1,000-mile bicycle tour for the Pedals & Beer Pumps Tour 2010. This tour was created partly for Heaton's love of cycling and to highlight the decline of the pub.

The full article from the Times is here:

Interestingly this also may show the difficulties involved in paying in pubs nowadays thanks to certain rules as I am sure during this tour he will meet other musicians and landlords who will discuss the problems of being able to have live music in their pub.

The article does show that far from a publicity stunt this guy does know what he is talking about, I admit I wasn't keen on the Beautiful South nor it's singer but he doesn't seem the idiot I thought he was.

If the Pedals & Beer Pumps Tour 2010 achieves anything, it will be “just to get a spark going. How are we gonna outwit Tesco’s or Sainsbury’s? Well, they can’t have a band playing in there. But the Three Horseshoes in Radnage can have me.”

Pubs do not have to be a cheap supermarket to attract customers back from cheap deals but places that are relaxing and interesting for people to go too. I enjoy a quiet pint but I also enjoy sitting in a pub with a pint watching/listening to a band or singer, variety is the key here.


  1. I'd heard about Paul Heaton's venture, and this kind of thing (live music in pubs) is one of the themes of my own blog, in which I try to publicise all such events local to my area. The outgoing government did announce, among a number of measures involving the licensed trade, a relaxation of the licensing laws in relation to music in small venues. Let's hope these proposals aren't lost with the accession the Con-Dem government.

    It is utterly ridiculous that an unamplified singer-guitarist, such as I am, can be illegal in a pub (depending on its licence), whereas noisy Sky Sports (and the noisy, foul-mouthed crowds they sometimes draw) is legal in every pub, irrespective of noise elevels.

  2. I really started to hear about these problems when we booked our wedding reception, we are having a trad jazz band for a few hours. Luckily the pub had changed it's license so they could have bands bigger than three musicians. It's nice to see articles like the one in the Times as I really don't think people have any idea of these issues.

    I have been in pubs where the music over the speakers is more excessively louder than a band playing! Yet this is seen as ok and likewise to the Sky Sports.

  3. I hope that the Lib-Con government do something about these daft laws. Incresed trade in pubs means more money for them in tax and VAT so here's hoping!

  4. Yes, fingers crossed. The reforms were suggested by Labour, so I hope they're not dismissed as a party issue by the Con-Dems. It's utterly bizarre that singing a song can be illegal.

    Tuneless, loud, aggressive and foul-mouthed football chants are perfectly okay, apparently. Just what we need to encourage good community pubs that welcome everyone.