Sunday 20 November 2022

Wetherspoons Downsizes

One of my favourite institutions in the country is JD Wetherspoon. Despite the fact that it is quite a new company by the standards of the industry, founded in 1979, it has become one of the most widespread public house chains in Britain. It has traditionally made daring gambles when setting up pubs. Many of them are converted from other buildings; banks, shops, cinemas, bingo halls etc. They usually have names linked to local history, such as the The William Morris close to my home in Cowley, Oxford, see:; named after the famous engineer who kick-started Oxford's car industry in 1910. Wetherspoons pubs have a unique homelike atmosphere. Their bar prices are the lowest I know of and they have managed to keep them low despite raging economic woes. This makes them the perfect night out for those of low income. When I'm meeting up with my good friend, comrade and space brother Colin Woolford, wherever it is, one of the first things he does is send me an SMS saying: "Where's the nearest 'Spoons?" or "I'm in the 'Spoons at (insert place name)." The founder of Wetherspoons, Tim Martin, is based AF. He is a vocal supporter of Brexit and opposed the lockdowns. The choice of the Cowley pub name itself is an act of defiance because Morris was a controversial character and there have been campaigns to cancel him. The pubs all have copies of the chain's in-house magazine, unoriginally titled Wetherspoon News, but it has published incredibly honest and anti-establishment articles, especially about Covid 19. It is almost like reading The Light! For this reason I was distressed to find that Wetherspoons are selling thirty-two of their pubs, including The Hope and Champion, one of their most infamous outlets. Being situated in a motorway service station, it was accused of "encouraging drink-driving!" Source: I do hope this mass sale does not represent a general downward trend in JD Wetherspoon's fortunes. Most of the pubs are in London and the southeast; and I've been to a couple of them. A spokesman for the company said: "Wetherspoon does, on occasion, put some pubs up for sale. It is a commercial decision." There are still nearly a thousand 'Spoons across the country and now a handful in Ireland. Maybe it is premature to worry.


PAUL armstrong said...

spoons are a bulwark against cultural marxism and political correctness , if ever they give pubs a option to allow smoking a feature again (highly unlikley i know) i expect big tim to make all 1000 pubs smoke friendly

Ben Emlyn-Jones said...

Absolutely, Paul! I'd love to see Tim rebel against the smoking ban like the Mad Scot in Blackpool.

Gavin said...

Hi Ben,
Don't hold Hamish in too high a regard. This is the man who claimed on live TV that secondary "passive" smoking has no effect and that Roy Castle did not die from cancer contracted this way by his many years in smoky venues.

That aside, recently he has spouted much vitriol against unvaccinated people saying that they are selfish and they are not welcome in his establishment.

It seems even in his sort and failed outing in politics he has learned to pick up the globalist narrative!