New money, new ideas, new women
in Women drinking out in Britain since the early twentieth century
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The prevailing masculine culture of drinking had consistently thwarted efforts to attract female custom. Brewing company executives blocked entry of women into pub tenancies, hired managers whose wives received no remuneration and employed estate managers who presided over many licensed premises as notable for their overwhelming masculinity as for their vile hygiene. Traditional pub culture had little to offer women. Critics of the Thatcher Government Beer Orders have exaggerated its impact. Before the government imposed restraints in 1989, pubcos had begun changing the retailing of alcohol. The beer orders accelerated emergence of a new culture in which women as consumers, tenants or managers now became conspicuous. New women’s drinking habits emerged, and females played a critical role as decision makers in determining what alcohol was purchased.


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