The National Rural Conference 2024

The Rural Services Network (RSN) is thrilled to announce the National Rural Conference 2024, taking place from 16th to 19th September. This virtual event, accessible via Zoom, is the premier gathering for senior officers, members, policymakers, and rural service professionals.
Further information and booking details can be found here

Invaluable role of Pub is The Hub in helping pubs to diversify their services and support people in rural communities highlighted in new report

Pub is The Hub has been featured in a new Localis report calling for more pub diversification support.

In the report, commissioned by the British Beer & Pub Association and entitled Inn-Valuable: unlocking the socio-economic potential of our nation’s pubs, it called for a 4m fund to support Pub is The Hub to help 1,000 pubs to diversify at a cost of 4,000 per pub.

Pub is The Hub helps pubs to diversify their services, with recent projects supported through small grants and expert advice, including community cafes, allotments, village stores and libraries.

The “pivotal role” pubs and publicans have in knitting communities together, promoting social cohesion, and adding social value was also highlighted in the Localis research.

The report said:

“In rural localities, pubs can be the beating heart of communities, playing multifaceted roles that urban centres may sometimes overlook. They are deeply embedded in the social and cultural life of these areas, acting as common grounds where locals meet, forge relationships, celebrate milestones, and discuss local affairs.”

It highlighted Pub is The Hub and social value engine data that found that across the range of projects Pub is The Hub supported during the first covid lockdown, an investment of £1 in a given project returned between £8.98 and £9.24 in additional social benefits.

The inn-valuable report also highlighted the Pub is The Hub’s initiative ‘Join Inn - Last Orders for Loneliness’, which aims to help tackle the big societal issue of loneliness by encouraging publicans to help create connections among people in their local areas through the facilities, activities and events on offer at their pubs.

Consumer research in the report undertaken by YouGov which found that 68% of British adults felt that pubs help combat loneliness in their local area.

The consumer poll also found that 75% of people felt the impact of pubs to community life to be positive. When asked if pubs are important in bringing people together, more than four-in-five (81%) of British adults agreed they are.

Pub is The Hub chief executive, John Longden, said:

“Pubs and publicans are the heroes at the heart of community life that provide essential local services and activities that create social value.

Pub is The Hub now estimates 1,000 more pubs and local areas could benefit from services if they can be directly supported in the future to diversify.”

Localis argued for a minister for pubs role be reinstated to join up help for the country’s pubs sector - which cumulatively supports 936,000 jobs, generates 28bn in GVA to the economy and delivers 15bn in tax revenues to the exchequer annually.

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