Statement on indoor hospitality reopening in the UK

Matt Lambert, CEO of the Portman Group, the social responsibility and regulatory body for alcohol in the UK, commented:

“We are delighted to see pubs, bars and restaurants fully reopen after such a difficult time for the hospitality sector. The lockdowns have been a challenge to us all, and the anticipation for friends and families to finally gather inside a pub makes us realise how important social contact is to our emotional wellbeing.

“Throughout the COVID-19 restrictions, over 33 pieces of research and analysis show that the moderate majority continued to drink responsibly, at either the same or less as they did pre-pandemic. Additionally, our research on hospitality reopening showed that almost three in four (86%) of UK drinkers intended to drink the same or less when pubs reopened suggesting that most responsible people will continue to moderate their drinking.

“Despite this, we recognise the devastating impact the past year has had on those drinking at the most harmful rates with many not being able to access the social and professional support they need. We call for targeted and appropriate measures to support those struggling with their relationship with alcohol.”