In the name of the law

It was nine years ago last month that I took the reins of Pub & Bar magazine. After a time spent writing about high street hospitality and other foodservice sectors, I was tasked by my publisher to learn, love and write about pubs. Tough gig, right?

To be honest, there was a vast amount more to learn than I had initially bargained for. Operating models, Beer Orders, who owns what, what they were previously called, and why did everyone start their career at Bass? Alongside visiting some of the finest venues across the UK, the challenge of educating myself on this fascinating industry is an enjoyable, ongoing assignment that I still take on every day

However, some topics you just need to leave to the experts, which is why I was so glad to inherit our legal writers, Clifton Davies Consultancy Limited, when I became editor of Pub & Bar. David and Suzanne have been contributors to this magazine since its very first issue, penning valuable prose and advice on how the law affects pubs and bars across the country. Days after I took on the new job, I met with the ever-smiling duo for a coffee in central London, where they asked me what sort of legal topics Pub & Bar’s new editor was looking to cover. Urm… fake IDs? I had absolutely no idea where to begin, so, I did my best politician impression, dodged the question, and said I’d like them to select their own topics for each issue. They’ve done that ever since

Over the years, the legal page has not only (hopefully) provided you all with sound, impartial guidance as and when new legislation or topics arose, but, in all honesty, it has been educational for me too. While editing David and Suzanne’s words, it’s hard not to be taken in by the complex issues at hand and what it means for the modern on-trade. Which is why I was sad to receive the duo’s final article this month – they have decided that as the industry relaunches itself, they are going to do something along the same lines and have a fresh start of their own. While the legal page will continue with some excellent new writers (all to be revealed next month), I wanted to publicly thank David and Suzanne for all of their words, work and advice over the past nine years. They have been of great value to Pub & Bar, and I hope our readers feel the same. 

Tristan O’Hana - Editor