Here we are with the big issue – not the wonderful publication that gives a hand-up not a hand-out to homeless people, but our July/August issue packed with stories, fun and information that should keep you entertained all summer.
The Cheers team has been enormously encouraged of late by the opening of new pubs, the reinvention of previously stagnating ones, and the innovation and enterprise shown by people who firmly believe there’s life (and a lot of it) still in the licensed sector. The pub and beer scene is buzzing whether it’s a mini-microbrewery, a micropub, a railway arch conversion, or an audacious step into selling beer and meat (Block & Bottle), beer and cheese (Hops & Cheese) or beer, coffee and cakes (Arch2).
Confidence is returning and the message is as always – go to the pub, enjoy it, tell your friends, then go back again. And again. But it’s no longer enough to sit back and wait; potential customers have myriad alternatives and a multitude of sweeteners demanding our spending power, so we have to try that bit harder to win support – and to keep it.
A final note; a farewell to Ailsa and Davy Patton who are off to a new life in Glasgow. Ailsa – one of those bar staff who can serve two people at once and assure the third they’re next – has done her last shift at The Schooner in Gateshead (before that, The Central, Gateshead), while talented musician Davy is hugely influential in the region’s live music scene, playing with the likes of The Sour Mash Trio. Good luck folks, you’ve done us proud and you’ll be a big miss.
Editor, Cheers North East