Wednesday, 8 October 2014

The Early Closing Order

Thursday 8th October 1914: The level of complaint about the restrictions on opening hours introduced in Luton has been such that a new order has been issued allowing licensed premises to open at any time from 6 a.m. and to sell alcoholic drinks until 9.30 p.m. After 9.30 p.m. they are allowed to remain open, but not to sell intoxicating liquor. Proving that you can never please everyone, the Luton News has published this letter to the editor:
Letter to the Editor of the Luton News Sir, - “The eating of the leek” policy adopted by the Luton Licesnsing Justices is extremely painful to all those who are desirous of a sober and decorous period, during the national crisis through which the nation is pasing, and the extra hour-and-half allowed for the consumption of minerals certainly savours of extreme ludicrousness. Where is there one patron of public-houses that would be content with swallowing cold ginger beer and lemonade these chilly October nights? It’s altogether highly farcical. I would like to ask the average working man if he cannot spend all the spare cash he has at his command for beer by 9 p.m. every night, especially in these hard and trying times. In fact, Sir, as times are, many, many shillings of our husbands spent in beer before 9 p.m. ought to go on the children’s feet or help to fill the empty cupboard, and if anyone takes the trouble upon different nights to notice when the soldiers turn out of the public houses, they will soon come to the conclusion, that in many instances, even for their welfare, the hour of 9 p.m. was amply late enough, and as regards the trade, there are many towns that have not nearly the military billeted upon them as Luton has, that have been closed at 9 p.m. weeks ago. – I remain, yours truly, A WORKING MAN’S WIFE.
 Source: Luton News 8/10/1914

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