March 05, 2008 | Graham

Are closing hours the issue?

Seems that they’re worried about binge drinking in the UK, but unlike Australia, they are actually looking at reliable statistics and coming to some different conclusions.
That doesn’t stop the Austrlalian media trying to spin the issue, and this report from the ABC is a disgrace. The ABC claims “24 hour drinking fuelling UK violence: study”, yet when you go to a more reliable source you find that while violence has increased by 4% between 3 and 6 am, there is no clear trend in hospital admissions and another source tells you that overall alcohol consumption has declined.
As a result, no-one in the UK is calling for shortened opening hours. It just looks like a case of what alcoholic violence there is being shifted around. Which makes sense. People get into blues on the street outside pubs, so fights will occur at closing time, whenever that is.
In Australia the only evidence of an increase in drinking appears to be in the underage group. In which case, closing hours shouldn’t be a consideration. Underage drinking also appears to be regarded as a problem in the UK, where they are doing the sensible thing – and increasing penalties for serving underage drinkers. Not that this will make much difference. I suspect the source of supply for most underage drinkers is family or friends.

Posted by Graham at 9:35 am | Comments (7) |
Filed under: Australian Politics


  1. I’d be more worried about the pill popping.Ecstacy can cost just $20 a tablet and they can go all night on two, while alcohol at a bar can be $10 or $15 per drink.Why do you think water is $10 a glass?
    We have fast moving culture that works and plays hard and have no idea or concern of the future health risks.

    Comment by Arjay — March 5, 2008 @ 4:51 pm

  2. If you’re talking about worrying about the violence, having concerns about Ecstasy is ridiculous. There’s a reason it’s called e.
    And, pubs/bars can’t legally charge for glasses of water, only bottles, due to responsible service of alcohol.

    Comment by Chade — March 6, 2008 @ 11:58 am

  3. So Chade is defending a drug that can permanently alter the chemical balanance in our brains.Ecstasy affects the balance of serotonin,which in turn affects,mood appetite,pain,learning and memory.There is evidence already that memory is affected.The same too can be said about long term pot users.A few I know who were intelligent people but have lost both incentive and memory.
    It would be nice to be lucid when greeting your grandchildren.

    Comment by Arjay — March 7, 2008 @ 6:50 pm

  4. There has been an hysterical campaign here in Newcastle to have pubs closed at 12am. The problem with complex problems is that people want simple solutions. All 12 am closing would do is move the problem onto the streets at the one time (public transport is not coping now with staggered closing hours). In addition it would shift drinking to the suburbs or parks or somewhere. Late night pub culture has become part of a young person’s way of life. You can’t unscramble the egg and return to the 1960s and 70s. We did a research project for the Alcohol Education and Research Foundation which showed that it was/is the behaviours and values which need to change not necessarily the consumption of alcohol per se. Alcohol consumption and dickhead group behaviour don’t have to be conjoined at the hip.

    Comment by barney — March 10, 2008 @ 12:33 pm

  5. That’s interesting Barney and would make a good OLO article. Is that something up your alley, or is there someone else that might be interested?

    Comment by Graham Young — March 10, 2008 @ 2:48 pm

  6. Would love to write soemthing Graham.
    However I head out for 2 months to Europe next week.
    Can it wait until i get back?

    Comment by barney — March 10, 2008 @ 3:08 pm

  7. Hey Arjay, do you have trouble with reading comprehension or summat? You sure missed the point of my statement having a precursor mentioning violence.
    You didn’t mention anything about your “$10 a glass” statement.

    Comment by Chade — March 14, 2008 @ 10:49 am

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