Publicans around Australia have been expressing their support for National Local Day, which will launch its inaugural celebration on March 23.
Lion has published QR codes in newspapers today that offer access to the Myy app, with a $15 pre-paid Mastercard sent to people’s Apple or Google wallet (depending on their smart phone device) to use at their local pub to raise a glass on National Local Day.
The offer ads are specific to eligible alcohol brands based on State/Territory, as follows:
- NSW & ACT – Toohey’s New
- QLD – XXXX Gold
- VIC – Furphy
- TAS – James Boag’s Draught
- SA – West End Draught
- WA – Swan Draught
“What’s worse than a pub without beer? It’s a pub without people. On March 23 last year we had both,” said Nick Daking (above), owner of Sporties Hotel and Councillor with the City of Launceston.
Daking is among the publicans who will be celebrating National Local Day this week. The initiative, spearheaded by Lion, marks one year since taps were turned off at pubs, clubs, bars and hospitality venues across Australia due to COVID-19 lockdowns.
The brewer is encouraging people across the country to go out and support their local during the inaugural day, noting its a time to celebrate our pubs and clubs “and the people who make them great”. It comes as many operators are yet to recover from the impacts of the pandemic and will see Lion inject more than half a million dollars into pubs and clubs across Australia through a consumer promotion launching later in the month.
Daking said that during the pandemic the staff at Sporties felt like the lucky ones being based in Tasmania: “We are close as an industry. We all know each other, and had beers and tears together over the phone.”
He added that during lockdown he really missed the micro-community that his pub created.
“We have got it back up and running now, but still I haven’t got the whole crowd back due to health concerns for those in their older years,” he said. “One of the eldest, Stan, who is around 84, still hasn’t been back at the pub since last year. We have been in touch with his family and sent him a six-pack of beer.”
Meanwhile, the owner of Bells Hotel in South Melbourne, Sam Tresise, revealed he was overwhelmed by the community spirit.
“Honestly, there were some days I would go home and cry,” he said. “I could not believe the generosity and care the community had for our team and what we were trying to achieve.
“Many of my peers have done it incredibly tough. 2021 will be a grind and, at best, to get back to where they were two years ago will be a great result.
“It is these people, venues and families that the National Local Day initiative means the most to.”
Lion Managing Director James Brindley (above) said: “March 23, 2020 was the darkest day in history for Australia’s pubs and clubs.
“Not only was it the first-time pubs and clubs had to shut their doors to their communities – ever, but it was also the first-time major breweries like Castlemaine Perkins and Tooheys have ever had to turn off their keg lines.
“Lion is declaring March 23, 2021 the inaugural National Local Day – to mark the anniversary of our local pubs and clubs falling silent – and to celebrate the resilience that has kept them going over these past 12 months.
“We should never take these venues – and the invaluable role they play in bringing Australian communities together – for granted.”