Designing and managing ‘places where people want to be’ is a basic mantra for all those involved in creating destination brands, whether they are shopping centres, retailers, banks or business centres. This has to be the credo of leisure and entertainment facilities of which pubs certainly represent.
The history of the pub is a story of both continuity and transformation. Public houses can be traced back to Roman taverns (tabernae) serving refreshment to travellers along the Roman roads network and they have been a symbolic part of British culture ever since. In villages, they became the focal point of the local community. Along major road arteries they developed as inns, also providing food and lodging. In the 18th and early 19th century the introduction of gin lead to a huge expansion in the number of hard drinking establishments followed by the 1830 Beer Act that led to the opening of 46,000 beer houses over an eight- year period until this growth was checked by licensing laws.