VOX SHOP

25 July, 2008

Should there be state regulation of the off-trade?

" The government should take complete control. I believe we should work like Norway does with outlets selling alcohol and nothing else, and a strict ratio of the number of off-licences to the population.

Halesworth has a population of around 5,000, so two fully -fledged off-licences would be sufficient. "

Alexander Carr

Wine Shop, Halesworth, Suffolk

"Anything the government gets involved in is generally a nightmare and a long-winded, bureaucratic mess. The problem is that whatever becomes flavour of the month, the government will stamp down on it. But whether we can be left to self-regulate remains to be seen."

Peter Milton

Bowers Wine & Spirits

Salcombe, Devon

"Putting units on drinks is a good idea, but anything past that is an infringement o n people's freedom. It's up to the individual to choose what they drink and how much .

The government can give the public information about the dangers of drinking too much, but that's as far as they should go."

Sam Atkins

Stanpit Wine Merchant

Christchurch, Dorset

"The industry should be left to self-regulate. If we want to do a promotion, we should be able to, and in my opinion, pubs should still be allowed to run happy hours. From a binge-drinking point of view, police should be doing more to clamp

down on irresponsible drinkers, rather than retailers ."

Joanne Gribbin

Abbey Wine

Melrose, Roxburghshire




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Richard Hemming MW: beware inverse snobbery

Few things can bring communal pleasure so intimately as wine. Apart from a hot tub, perhaps. Sport can trigger mass jubilation, film gives us shared empathy, but wine has a nigh-unique ability to bestow conviviality among us through a shared bottle – which makes it especially galling that we spend so much time divided over it.

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