Monday, 26 September 2016

My criteria for writing about pubs

The Globe in Liverpool, a
pub I have yet to write about
In a comment under my post about the Richmond, Cooking Lager has asked why I am writing advertorial. It is a serious question that he has asked twice now, so I have decided to give it a separate post to clarify my approach. These blog posts about pubs are from the CAMRA Southport & District Branch columns in our local paper, the Southport Visiter, as I make clear at the end of each. When I agreed to write them, both local CAMRA and the paper accepted that I'd also use them on this blog.

The newspaper columns I write are not advertorial: I am not paid by anyone to do this, and in fact the Richmond is at present unaware of my visit as the staff were so busy that I couldn't collar one for a short chat as I usually do. I consequently just gathered what info I could by myself. 

To be honest, the Richmond is not a pub I'd go to for a few pints as it is so heavily food-oriented, but it was very busy and clearly meets a certain demand. However, I am not writing a personal column, so it's not about my tastes. If a pub serves real ale in reasonably good nick, regardless of whether the beers are those I'd choose, or even whether it is my type of pub, I'll consider it for the column. I always list the beers and describe the pub as well as I can in the limited space available, so I hope readers get a reasonable idea of what's it's like.

The column appears in the "What's On" section of the local paper, so I tend to assume that they want articles about nice real ale pubs in the locality that readers might like to try, although that doesn't stop me from writing columns on other CAMRA matters - campaign issues, local branch business, beer festivals, etc, which I don't necessarily post here. I assume the paper doesn't want me to tear local businesses to shreds in its pages, so if the beer quality is poor, I simply won't write about the pub concerned, which has happened four times so far. I have also tried to cover pubs from suburban and rural areas, not just town centres - pubs that might tend to be overlooked otherwise.

The details such as phone numbers, addresses, Facebook pages and websites may look it look like advertorial, but such details would be helpful should anyone decide to try a pub based on what I've written in the paper. As I post the articles here for similar reasons, it makes sense to leave them in.

I hope that's clearer.


  1. It good stuff, Nev. Better than the crap other bloggers come out with. You should ask the paper to pay for copy. Get a quid for it, fella.

    1. That would be nice. I asked the editor if I could have expenses to cover my costs. No chance!

    2. Start a trade union for us Bloggers, Nev. Make sure we get paid.

      I'll go on strike, anytime, pal.

  2. I too try to follow "Thumper's rule": "If you can't say something nice, don't say nothing at all" (apologies for Disney's use of a double negative).


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