Club Soda and Blenheim team up to develop a product for pubs and bars to boost their commitment to sensible drinking.

Blenheim and Club Soda are working together to make nights out better for everyone, by developing a new product for licensed venues and their customers to find the best places to go for a less boozy night out.

Based on research in pubs and bars in Hackney, ‘Nudging pubs’ will work with venues, customers and licensing to develop new digital tools to support sensible drinking. This will include an online self-assessment tool, allowing pubs and bars to introduce new ideas and rate how well they are doing at providing for their customers who want to drink less. Customers will get the final say, and will get to review and vote for what they think are the best local venues.

The Nudging Pubs report is the culmination of a year’s worth of research and experiments with venues in Hackney, looking at how pubs and bars could be more welcoming to customers who don’t want to drink alcohol or who want to drink less. It found that:

  • Pubs and bars want to do more but lack ideas, time, and space to make changes
  • Customers panic at the bar, but given better information about non-alcoholic options on offer by staff, they would make healthier choices
  • There is no shared understanding of what ‘promoting sensible drinking’ means in local authority licensing policies.

You can see the full results of the research and the next stage of product development at nudgingpubs.uk or by following @nudgingpubs on Twitter.

Blenheim is a leading charity that has been supporting people with alcohol and substance misuse issues across London for over 50 years. In this new partnership, Blenheim will be working alongside Club Soda (joinclubsoda.co.uk). Club Soda is a digital service and peer community that supports people to change their drinking – whether they want to cut down, stop for a bit,  quit, or stick.

John Jolly, CEO of Blenheim, stated that ‘Blenheim are committed to working in innovative ways and campaigning for positive change in the alcohol and drug sector. This new project is an exciting opportunity for us to work with new partners and develop new tools to promote behaviour change with a wider audience.’

Laura Willoughby MBE from Club Soda said: ‘we know that pubs and bars want to cater for the growing market of individuals drinking less alcohol, and we want to set the gold standard for what ‘good’ looks like. Most importantly we want the customers to have the final say on which venues are the best. We think this product will do that.’

Penny Bevan, Director of Public Health at Hackney Council explained that  “through the council’s Healthier Hackney Fund, we are supporting organisations to test new ways of addressing some of our biggest public health challenges. We hope that this initiative will empower customers, as well as pubs and bars themselves, to talk more openly about the choices and opportunities for people who want to drink a bit less alcohol on a night out. A quarter of 16-24 year olds don’t drink, so this is about making licensed venues better for everyone.”

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