Beer Hawk FRESH partners with Swinkels Family Brewers

December 2019

Beer Hawk FRESH has signed a distribution partnership with Swinkels Family Brewers, making a range of iconic European craft beers available to UK bars and retailers in prime chilled condition.

The new partnership builds on Swinkels existing distribution agreements, and adds acclaimed beer ranges including Rodenbach, Palm, Cornet, De Molen and La Trappe to the portfolio of craft drinks supplied by Beer Hawk FRESH, available in bottle, can and keg same-day to London customers, and for next-day delivery across the UK.

At the same time, Swinkels Family Brewers is appointing its first London-based sales representative, who will also work alongside the Beer Hawk FRESH team to maximise the opportunities for the Swinkels brands in the dynamic London craft beer market, across both the on- and off-trade.

Andrew Morgan, Head of Beer Hawk FRESH, said: “We’re very excited to be adding these classic European beers to our portfolio of brands. As our network of partnerships grows, our focus is on ‘collaboration, not competition’, with every beer bringing something unique to the range.

“Offering diversity and choice is essential to any business targeting craft beer aficionados, who switch between modern beer styles and genuine classics according to the occasion. That’s a challenge to the traditional distribution model and for us, working with brewers such as Lion on Fourpure, Carlsberg on London Fields and now Swinkels on Rodenbach, feels very much like the industry coming around to our collaborative way of thinking.”

Rob Page, Managing Director of Swinkels Family Brewers UK, said: “Both in bars and the off-trade, and across keg and packaged beer, the craft market offers us a huge opportunity, but also means we have to update our approach.

“The Palm range, for example, has a well-established following in London and there’s an opportunity to re-engage consumers. Equally, both Rodenbach, one of the world’s most awarded breweries, and La Trappe, an acclaimed Trappist beer, are a great fit alongside the new wave of craft brands, as part of a well-curated beer offering.

“We’re looking forward to working with Beer Hawk FRESH to maximise these new opportunities, and we’ll also have our own ‘feet on the street’, with a beer sales specialist working alongside the Beer Hawk FRESH team.”

Netherlands-based Swinkels Family Brewers is a family business with a 300 year, seven generation brewing heritage and a portfolio of prestigious beer brands and breweries in Europe.
Beer Hawk FRESH is part of ZX Ventures, the global growth and innovation group of AB InBev, and operates a chilled supply chain, supplying brewery-fresh beer from its refrigerated warehouse in Central London.

Retailers can sign up for the service at or contact

World’s Biggest Pub Quiz returns in March 2020

December 2019

Registrations pass 400 mark with three months to go

Pubs, bars, restaurants and clubs are being urged to reserve a date in their diaries between 8-12 March next year for the World’s Biggest Pub Quiz – a fundraising initiative organised by PubAid to raise money for charities, including their official charity partner Action Against Hunger UK.

More than 400 pubs have already signed up via the website and PubAid has set a target of recruiting 2,000 by March. Earlier this year, more than 1,500 pubs took part, raising £230,000, and since the quiz was launched in 2016, it has raised a total of £750,000.

Licensees who register will receive a free quiz pack, including two sets of quiz questions, posters and social media assets to encourage customers to come along and join in. Pubs are free to fundraise for a charity of their choosing, and those unsure are encouraged to raise money for official charity partners, Action Against Hunger, who treat more children facing life-threatening hunger than any other charity.

As well as pubs, this year has also seen local community groups and restaurants getting in on the action, testament to the quiz’s growing appeal and to the links forged with the restaurant sector through Action Against Hunger’s ‘Love Food, Give Food’ campaign.

Co-founder of PubAid, Des O’Flanagan, said: “We’re delighted with this early response from pubs; having more than 400 registrations with three months still to go shows how the quiz is becoming a fixture for many licensees and their customers.

“The quiz is easy for pubs to host and promote, a lot of fun for the customers who take part, and a great way to support a charity. We’re confident of hitting our sign up target by March and look forward to seeing even more money raised for charities, including Action Against Hunger.”

Matt White, Director of Fundraising at Action Against Hunger UK said: “We are thrilled to have been chosen as the charity partner for PubAid’s World’s Biggest Pub Quiz. We have been working with restaurants for twenty years and their support has meant that countless children around the world have won their battle with life-threatening hunger. To be building on that success and have the opportunity to partner with the pub industry is an exciting new chapter for our organisation.

“We are really excited about next year’s quiz and hopefully have a few surprises up our sleeve to ensure that it is the biggest and best quiz yet! Here’s hoping that lots of pubs will take this opportunity to support our mission of a world where no child dies of hunger.”

Free quiz packs will be sent in early 2020 to all pubs registering at

The World’s Biggest Pub Quiz is scheduled for 8-12 March 2020, but the organisers stress that this window is a guideline, not a requirement. Pubs who want to take part but can’t run the quiz during that week are welcome to run it at any other time.

Action Against Hunger has produced a short film demonstrating how the quiz will support their work, which can be viewed here

Workplace drinking culture revealed as Drinkaware research explores seasonal pressure

Deecember 2019

New research from alcohol education charity Drinkaware reveals that almost two-thirds (61%) of drinkers in the UK over-indulge on alcohol over the festive season more than they usually do, while one in five (18%) say they typically experience more hangovers during this period.

The YouGov poll for Drinkaware also found that drinkers who work are more likely to feel pressured to drink at their work party (33%) than other times of year such as New Year’s Eve (where 29% say they feel more pressure to drink) and Christmas Day (20%). And more than a quarter (29%) feel extra pressure to drink over the festive period with their work colleagues.

Drinkaware CEO Elaine Hindal says: “This new research shows just how much drinking is ingrained within the UK’s work culture during the festive period, with many people feeling more pressure to drink.

“Over-indulging can lead to mistakes, regrets and hangovers – as well as increasing the risk of developing a range of diseases if consumption regularly exceeds the Chief Medical Officers’ low risk drinking guidelines of 14 units of alcohol a week.

““Pubs, bars and clubs will be busy with revellers this season, but licensees shouldn’t forget that they’re also employers. They could be asking themselves whether their celebration culture is centred too heavily around alcohol and if they can offer alternative choices at their team Christmas parties.”

The research found one in six UK drinkers (16%) admit to having done something they regret at a New Year’s Eve party because of alcohol. The same percent admit the same at a work party.
More than one in ten (13%) UK drinkers admit they are avoiding social occasions this festive season because of the pressure to drink alcohol.

Drinkaware also found that on average, men admit to consuming six drinks on Christmas Day. Using a common strength pint of beer or medium glass of wine as a measure, this is the equivalent of 14 units of alcohol. Women admit to having on average four and a half drinks on Christmas Day. However, studies have shown that people in the UK tend to underestimate how much they drink; the amount people say they drink represents only about two-thirds of all alcohol sold.*

Elaine Hindal adds, “Pubs, clubs and bars can play an important part in reducing the alcohol harms that arise when people are pressured into drinking too much over the festive season.
“By putting in place some simple measures, operators can help customers to control their drinking, and make sure that those who are choosing not to drink alcohol – whether because they’re driving or for other reasons – feel welcome in their venue.

“These could include: offering an interesting range of low and no alcohol drinks, selecting house wines at the lower end of the ABV scale, and making them available in 125ml serves, and serving food for the same hours as drinks are served.”

Drinkaware also recommends equipping team members to spot the signs of someone who is drinking more than they should, perhaps because of peer pressure. Drinkaware’s Alcohol Vulnerability Awareness e-learning course helps staff to understand what vulnerability means and gives practical advice on how to support customers. For more information contact

Finally, if you suspect a customer is buying alcohol for someone who is already drunk – or who is drunk themselves – then selling them a drink is against the law. Drinkaware and the British Beer & Pub Association have produced two posters to help communicate this to customers – ‘Can’t Get Served’ and ‘Mate’s in a State’, which can both be downloaded free of charge from the Drinkaware website here


Best of Beer Writing Recognised In Annual Awards

December 2019

London-based beer writer and filmmaker Jonny Garrett has been named Beer Writer of the Year 2019 at the Guild of Beer Writers’ Annual Awards, presented on 3rd December in London.

Beer Writer of the Year is the top accolade in the Guild’s annual competition for writing about beer and pubs, which this year received more than 150 entries across 11 categories. Garrett won Gold Awards in the Broadcast and Online categories, and a Silver award in the Beer and Travel category, on his way to the top honour. This year’s highest-ever prize fund of £13,500 was shared between 12 Gold and Silver award winners.

Garrett is the co-founder and presenter of YouTube’s Craft Beer Channel. He and Brad Evans travel the world, visiting craft beers and bars, brewing collaborations with brewers and cooking or matching food with beer. The programme has 20,000 regular subscribers. Garrett is also a regular contributor to beer magazines and websites including BEER and Good Beer Hunting

Emma Inch, chair of judges for this year’s Awards after taking the Beer Writer of the Year title in 2018, said, “Jonny demonstrates a sure touch across a range of media from print to blog posts and feature films. His work is sometimes just for beer nerds, at other times educational for a non-beer audience, and at all times engaging and insightful. If we had a slot for a beer programme on mainstream TV, Jonny should make it.

“The standard of entries across all categories was extremely high and judges had a tough task choosing the winners and runners up. We were impressed by the levels of knowledge, energy and passion that shone through the works submitted by our finalists, whether they had written a column, published a book or produced a film.

“Tonight’s roll of honour includes a number of new names, with writers who only joined the Guild in the last couple of years making an impact and proving that our robust judging rewards talent, not time served. Everyone who received an award or a commendation should be extremely proud; they really are the cream of British beer writing in 2019 and we wish them all success in their future career communicating about beer and pubs.”

Inch was joined on the judging panel by Laurence Creamer, Social & Digital Lead on industry campaign Long Live The Local; Tim Hayward, food & drink author, restaurant reviewer and regular on Radio 4’s Kitchen Cabinet;: Charlie McVeigh, founder of Draft House; Tony Naylor, food & drink writer contributing to The Guardian and BBC Good Food; Ross O’Hara, head brewer at Greene King; Kate Oppenheim, hospitality sector journalist and communications expert, currently publisher and editor of BII News; Tony Sophoclides, Strategic Affairs Director at UKHospitality

The Brewer of the Year title, sponsored by SIBA, was presented to Sophie de Ronde, founder of Burnt Mill Brewery, who won the highest number of votes in a poll of Guild members.

Presenting the Award, Guild Chair Pete Brown said: “Sophie is a highly technical and accomplished brewer who led the launch – and continued and international success – of Burnt Mill Brewery. She is hugely engaged in the beer industry, and passionate about taking beer to a wider audience, through her involvement in events such as International Women’s Collaboration Brew Day.”

The winners were announced at the Guild’s annual dinner held at One Great George Street in Westminster. Each dish was served with a specially selected beer: Beatnikz Republic’s Weizenart, Fuller’s Vintage Ale 2018, Anspach & Hobday’s The Smoked Brown and Thornbridge Brewery’s Necessary Evil. Beers from the Award’s sponsoring brewers – Asahi, Adnams, Carlsberg, Greene King, Heineken, St Austell Family Group and a number of SIBA’s award-winning member brewers – were enjoyed before and after dinner.


SIBA Award for Brewer of the Year

Sophie de Ronde, Burnt Mill Brewery

Guild Award for Best Citizen Beer Communicator

Winner: Lana Svitankova for

Commended: Oli Haydon for

Guild Award for Best Beer Writer, Corporate Communications

Winner: Ei Group for National Pub Fortnight

Commended: Verdant Brewing

Guild Award for Best Beer Broadcaster

Winner: Jonny Garrett for YouTube and podcasts:

Commended: Natalya Watson for

Long Live the Local Award for Best Writer about Pubs

Winner: Ian Clayton for It’s the Beer Talking

Commended: Katie Mather for writing in Ferment

Asahi Award for Best Beer & Travel Writer

Winner: Claire Bullen for writing on

Silver Award: Jonny Garrett for YouTube films and article in BEER

Carlsberg UK Award for Best Writing about Sustainability in Beer and Pubs

Winner: Will Hawkes for articles in BEER, among others

Silver Award: Matthew Curtis for articles in Ferment

St Austell Family Group Award for Best Young Beer Writer of the Year

Winner: Daniel Woolfson for writing in The Grocer

Silver Award: Eoghan Walsh for articles on

Commended: Lily Waite for articles on and

Heineken Award for Best Beer Communicator, Online

Winner: Jonny Garrett for YouTube and

Silver Award: Claire Bullen for writing on

Fuller, Smith & Turner Award for Best Beer Writer, Trade Media

Winner: Richard Molloy for articles in Inapub

Silver Award: Will Hawkes for articles in Imbibe

Commended: Anthony Gladman for articles including Drinks Retailing News

Adnams Award for Best Beer Writer – Regional Media

Winner: Alastair Gilmour for Cheers magazine

Silver Award: Simon Jenkins for The Yorkshire Beer Bible

Greene King Award for Best Beer Writer – National Media

Winner: Adrian Tierney-Jones for articles in Daily Star, Daily Telegraph and others

Silver Award: Claire Bullen for The Beer Lover’s Table and various articles

Commendation: Eoghan Walsh for articles in Ferment, Pellicle and others

The Michael Jackson Gold Award for Beer Writer of the Year 2019: Jonny Garrett

The Guild is grateful to the following sponsors, whose support makes possible our annual awards and dinner:


Established in 1872, Adnams combines innovation with tradition. Behind the walls of its Victorian-looking building, it has some of the most advanced and energy-efficient brewing equipment in Europe and constantly experiments with new, innovative techniques. Adnams brews a range of quality beers which reflect its heritage but also challenge conventions. The brewer uses locally-grown East Anglian grains of malted barley, rye, wheat and oats wherever possible and deploy a number of different hop varieties from Britain as well as across the world – all of which contribute to their beers’ individual characters. Adnams retains the values of an independent, family run business with a strong commitment to and leadership in sustainable business practice.

Asahi Europe Ltd

Asahi Europe’s beer portfolio includes beers brewed in unique ways and with unique histories, from medieval Belgium and Netherlands to modern day Japan, Italy and Great Britain. Crafted from a long tradition and rich heritage, our world-class brands continuously reinvent themselves as contemporary premium beers that travel the world and please discerning consumers in nearly 80 countries. Supported by state-of-the-art breweries, quality ingredients and a culture that fosters innovation, encourages collaboration and rewards high performance, we aim to bring the best quality of beer to life. Our variety of beers delight millions of people around the world with their top quality and uncompromising integrity.

Carlsberg UK

As part of the Carlsberg Group, Carlsberg UK has long been brewing and selling some of Britain’s favourite beers. Today, they include Carlsberg Danish Pilsner, Carlsberg Export, Poretti, Grimbergen and Tuborg. We also hold the UK brand licences for San Miguel, Mahou, and the Brooklyn Brewery range, putting them at the heart of our growing premium portfolio.

Our founders were driven by an ambition to brew for a better today and tomorrow. Over 170 years later, we continue to pursue the same purpose. We want to contribute to a better society wherever our beers are brewed and sold, and that includes taking a lead on sustainability. It is central to our purpose, and we also believe it’s the right thing to do – bringing clear benefits to our business and to society as a whole.

Fuller, Smith and Turner

Fuller, Smith and Turner P.L.C. is a premium pub and hotel business with just under 200 Tenanted and just over 200 Managed Pubs and Hotels. Fuller’s focuses on providing delicious fresh, home-cooked food, outstanding cask and craft ale, great wine and exceptional service and there are 817 boutique bedrooms across the Managed estate. The Fuller’s pub estate stretches from Brighton to Birmingham and from Bristol to the Greenwich Peninsula, including 173 locations within the M25. Fuller’s also owns Bel & The Dragon, six stunning country inns across the Home Counties, and The Stable, a craft cider and gourmet pizza restaurant business, with 17 restaurants in England and Wales. In April 2019, Fuller’s sold its beer business to Asahi Europe Ltd.

Greene King

Brewing in Bury St Edmunds, the home of Greene King, dates back 1000 years to day of the Doomsday book and in 2019 our two historic breweries, Westgate in Bury St Edmunds and Belhaven in Dunbar will be celebrating a combined brewing heritage of 520 years. With a diverse range in our beer portfolio, from pale ales to craft beers and from bitters to stout one thing is for sure, our passion for brewing top quality, delicious beer is as strong today as all those years ago.

We are proud to sponsor the Guild of Beer Writers Awards, a wonderful celebration of our national passion for great quality British beer, the writers who challenge the brewers and the brewing industry who continue to drive innovation in beer.


With over 2,000 passionate people, some of the nation’s most loved beers and ciders, 2,700 pubs, thousands of acres of orchards and three UK breweries, there’s more to HEINEKEN than the name above the door. Our portfolio of brands includes Heineken®, Lagunitas, Birra Moretti, Maltsmiths, Kronenbourg1664, John Smith’s, Amstel and Red Stripe, backed by a full range of niche and speciality brands. We are also proud to work in partnership with Beavertown Brewery and Brixton Brewery.

As long term supporters of the British Guild of Beer Writers, we truly believe in the power of storytelling – whether that be through the written word, a podcast, or a photograph. And we are proud to be sponsoring once again.

Long Live The Local

This campaign, backed by Britain’s Beer Alliance, celebrates the vital role local pubs play in our community, culture and economy whilst highlighting the jeopardy they face from a range of taxes including beer duty, business rates and VAT. Last year more than 116,000 people signed the petition and almost 50,000 people wrote to their MP asking for a cut in beer duty. The Chancellor heard the voices of pub goers, publicans and politicians and froze beer duty protecting jobs and future investment – but there is more to do.

This year, so far, more than 218,000 people have signed the petition and over 107,000 people have written to their MP. In addition, 25,000 pubs are supporting the campaign. With a Budget now likely in January 2020, there is still time to sign a petition and email your MP to ask for a cut in beer duty at


SIBA represent around 750 independent craft brewers across the UK and are the voice of British independent brewing. With their ‘Assured Independent British Craft Brewer’ seal, SIBA champion quality, flavoursome beers from independent craft brewers, as well as protect the businesses of thousands of breweries across the UK through Government lobbying and campaigning in Parliament.

St Austell Family Group

In 2016, St Austell Brewery joined forces with fellow West Country brewer, Bath Ales, forming the St Austell Family Group.

Independent, family-owned brewer, St Austell Brewery has been brewing beer in Cornwall since 1851. Most famous for its flagship beer, Tribute Cornish Pale Ale, St Austell Brewery’s range of award-winning beers – also including Proper Job IPA and Korev Lager – are available in pubs and supermarkets nationwide.

Bath Ales opened the doors to its new four-vessel brew house, Hare Brewery, in 2018. Fronted by flagship beer, Gem, Hare Brewery has the capacity to produce over 50,000 brewers’ barrels of beer – doubling Bath Ales’ previous brewing capacity. An exciting schedule of new beers launched alongside the brewery opening, including a West Coast IPA – Lansdown – and premium English lager, Sulis.

The St Austell Family Group employs more than 1,500 people and runs over 175 pubs, inns and hotels across the South West.

The British Guild of Beer Writers was formed in 1988 to help spread the word about beers, brewing and pubs. With more than 300 individual members and 60+ corporate members, its mission is “to improve the standards of beer writing and improve the public knowledge of beer and pubs.” Its members include the cream of the country’s beer communicators – be they journalists, authors, producers, photographers, broadcasters, illustrators or PR consultants. Corporate members of the Guild include brewers, brand owners, distributors, pub companies, and many suppliers associated with the brewing trade.

Oliver Kay Produce appoints new development chef

December 2019

Fresh produce specialist Oliver Kay Produce has appointed Dean Kinsey as development chef.

Kinsey joins the business as sales of vegan and vegetarian dishes continue to grow, and will be working with chefs across the full range of hospitality businesses to develop innovative ingredients and recipe ideas.

His background as a chef spans fine dining in restaurants and hotels, food-led pubs and private dining, and he was most recently head chef at BAB NQ restaurant in Manchester.
One of Kinsey’s first tasks will be to help oversee the Oliver Kay National Vegan Dish of the Year 2020, a high-profile recipe competition for chefs, which launches in January 2020.

He said: “I’m delighted to join Oliver Kay, and it’s definitely a case of jumping in at the deep end as we launch the search for new and innovative vegan menu ideas.

“It’s now essential that hospitality businesses offer engaging vegan options, and I’m looking forward to seeing what my fellow chefs come up with for the competition – as well as working closely with them in the longer term to drive sales of plant-based ingredients, and develop new recipes.”

Kinsey’s role is not limited to vegan dishes, as he has an expertise in meat, including game, developed during his days working in country pubs. This ability to turn his hand to a wide range of cooking styles will enable him to support chefs and caterers at all levels with menu planning and recipe development.

Ian Stuart, Managing Director of Oliver Kay Produce, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Dean on board. His experience of a broad range of catering businesses combined with the flair, innovative ideas and skills he brings, will ensure our sales teams appreciate what can be done with fantastic seasonal produce, and help our customers offer innovative and profitable menus.”

Oliver Kay supplies a wide selection of vegan products and ingredients, which will be further expanding in time for January menus. For more information and for chefs to order call 0844 847 9790 or order online from Oliver Kay Produce

Drinkaware relaunches night-time economy safety scheme

November 2019

Hackney and Cardiff first to sign up to new Nightlife Crew training

Drinkaware is relaunching its successful Drinkaware Crew scheme with a new name – Nightlife Crew – and a new structure that includes five different training offers to extend the scheme into a wider range of environments.

Hackney and Cardiff have become the first local areas to sign up for Nightlife Crew. Drinkaware is expecting more local authorities, BIDs (Business Improvement District) and others with responsibility for night-time safety to adopt the training over the coming months.

The relaunch follows a thorough evaluation of the scheme, which was launched in 2015 and has so far been activated in clubs and bars in 21 areas across the country, including Birmingham, Bristol, Glasgow and Nottingham. It has also been informed by Drinkaware’s activity at festivals, such as British Summer Time, and on the streets, like those in Soho, where the original training has been successfully adapted to promote customer safety.

Nightlife Crew is being offered to local authorities and BIDs, through a ‘train the trainer’ course delivered by Drinkaware. Delegates who successfully complete the course are then accredited by Drinkaware to deliver the training in their areas, incorporating it into their existing night-time safety initiatives.

Nightlife Crew is available as a complete package of five training modules:
• Club Crew: Training for dedicated members of staff in a pub or club, whose role is to promote a positive social environment and identify and support customers who may become vulnerable
• Lead Crew: Training for managers and supervisors, equipping them to support customers
• Support Crew: E-learning for all staff to raise awareness of vulnerability in venues
• Festival Crew: Adapted training for dedicated members of staff to support festival-goers
• Street Crew: Training for dedicated volunteers within local communities, helping them to support people on the streets rather than in venues, and to create a safer environment

Drinkaware will continue to offer its e-learning course, now called Support Crew, direct to pub, bar and club operators wanting to ensure that all their staff selling alcohol are trained to identify and deal with alcohol-related vulnerability.

Brett Crabtree, Head of Business Development at Drinkaware, said: “We’ve already seen our night-time safety scheme help so many people to have a safer, more positive night out, and we’re grateful to the many partners who have made it such a success.

“We’re enormously proud to see the training evolve into what is now Nightlife Crew.

“We’re delighted to have secured Hackney and Cardiff as our first partners and are looking forward to seeing Nightlife Crew roll out across the country. We would urge all local authorities, BIDs and others with a night-time safety remit to look at how Nightlife Crew can help to promote their local area as one that people can visit for an enjoyable evening – without the risk of alcohol harms.”

Adrian Field, Executive Director at FOR Cardiff, said: “We are proud that Cardiff’s nightlife has so much to offer. Our aim is always to ensure the public experience Cardiff at its best by promoting the city as a safe environment where you can have a memorable night out. We’re delighted to be rolling out Drinkaware’s Nightlife Crew training in venues across the city. The Nightlife Crew training gives venues the confidence that their staff are fully aware of how to support customers, thereby giving them room to provide quality, safe service as well as a great time.”

Samantha Mathys, Hackney Council’s Late Night Levy Manager, said: “We’re really excited to be rolling out Nightlife Crew at the beginning of 2020 to venues across the borough. The training will form part of Hackney Nights, our night-time safety charter, which will encompass and deliver a variety of training modules for venues and public advice on safety-related issues throughout the night-time economy.

“So alongside the training, our Charter will include public awareness campaigns on night-time safety and resources for local licensed premises, funded by Hackney’s Late Night Levy, which is paid for by local late-night licensed venues to contribute towards policing and the management of night-time economy areas.

“In addition to licensee training and resources and our public awareness campaigns, the Late Night Levy is also funding extra police presence on the ground. These are just some of the ways our Late Night Levy is helping to promote a safer night-time economy and protect local residents, visitors and licensees from crime and antisocial behaviour.

“Drinkaware’s training is another layer to Hackney Nights, and we are sure that it will empower venues with the tools they need to help support their customers on nights out.”

Proven success

The night-time training from Drinkaware has made an impact in a number of venues, including larger clubs and bars. In what will now be known as Club Crew, dedicated, specially-trained team members circulate inside the venue, promoting a more positive atmosphere and supporting customers where needed – reuniting them with lost friends or helping them get home. In research at nine venues operating the scheme1, four out of five customers said they felt more positive about a venue with Crew in place. Three in four would be willing to pay £1 more for entry if a venue offered Drinkaware’s Crew scheme.

Last Christmas, Westminster City Council launched its Soho Angels night-time safety scheme, for which Drinkaware provides training to its large group of volunteers. The scheme, which runs in partnership with the LGBT Foundation and is supported by Smirnoff, runs every weekend, and collaborates with St John Ambulance as well as the local police and ambulance services. Volunteers, who join the scheme from all ages and backgrounds, receive the Drinkaware-based training to help people on a night out to ‘end the night well’. The training includes everything from how to approach someone who is drunk to how to spot someone with alcohol poisoning. In just a year the Soho Angels have helped hundreds of people get home safely, prevented ‘blue light’ incidents and even saved lives.

To find out more about Nightlife Crew, contact

To purchase the Support Crew e-learning module, contact

1 Future Thinking (2019). Drinkaware Crew Research. February 2019. London: Future Thinking. Available at: