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Edinburgh based Pub Company raises money for leading Loneliness Awareness Charity

Heineken-owned Star Pubs' – headquartered in Edinburgh – is giving a £50,000 boost to leading loneliness charity Marmalade Trust2 through a series of 10 sponsored walks.

Edinburgh based Pub Company raises money for leading Loneliness Awareness Charity

Article Source: Star Pubs
Last Updated: 13 May 2024 10:12

The massive walkathon hopes to raise understanding of loneliness, as new research reveals that 50% of adults feel lonely at least once a week.

Over 70 colleagues from Heineken UK and Star Pubs – which has 230 pubs across Scotland including 58 in Edinburgh3 – undertook two fundraising hikes around the city. Pubs along the route showed their support by providing hospitality, including a quiz and a silent disco, to demonstrate the role that good locals play in building social connections.

Money raised from the walks will fund loneliness awareness training in pubs around Scotland as well as wider campaigns to increase recognition of loneliness and signpost people to support.

New research4 commissioned by Star Pubs demonstrates the extent of loneliness in 2024:

• 50% of those questioned report feeling lonely at least once a week and a tenth of respondents (11%) feel lonely every day. The most common time to be lonely is on weekday evenings, with a third reporting this.
• Nearly four out of ten people (39%) say they think the uncertain and worrying times we live in make them feel lonelier than they would otherwise be.
• 88% agree that social hubs and third spaces, such as pubs, are important to prevent loneliness and create social connections.
• More than half of respondents – 55% – would like to go on more nights out, but don’t get asked.

Matt Dyson, operations director for Star Pubs in Scotland said: “Most of us experience loneliness at some stage in our lives; it’s not exclusive to one age group. Our research shows the scale of the issue and how the current uncertain times are exacerbating it. It’s something we need to talk about and address. As hubs of the areas they serve, pubs are ideally placed to help. According to our survey, the main reason three quarters of pubgoers visit their local is to connect with other people, whilst for more than a third it’s to engage with their community. Working with Marmalade Trust we hope to play our part in building a more connected society.”

The Woodhall Arms in Currie and The Murrayfield Bar & Kitchen in Edinburgh backed the fundraising walks by providing refreshments for the participants.

The Murrayfield Bar & Kitchen, Roseburn Terrace, Edinburgh
Having taken over The Murrayfield in January, Ryan Myles is putting it back on the map as a top quality local serving great food and hosting events such as a quiz and entertainment. Says Ryan: “I’ve worked in hospitality all my life and have seen first hand the role pubs play in alleviating and preventing loneliness. Providing a warm, friendly atmosphere where everyone is welcome and people feel comfortable coming on their own to make new friends is what a good local is all about. Loneliness can affect people at all stages of their lives from students who’ve moved to a new place to those working from home and retirees. It’s fantastic to be able to support a campaign that is raising awareness of loneliness and doing something about it.”

The Woodhall Arms, Currie, Edinburgh
Mother and daughter team Bev Craig and Alana Crooks took the reins at The Woodhall Arms when it reopened in December 2021 after a six-year closure. The pub is now a thriving meeting place that puts on a whole range of activities to bring people together, including darts, sports screenings, karaoke and live music. Says Alana: “We were packed out when we reopened with local residents who’d really missed their gathering place. It’s the last traditional local in the village, and everyone is welcome and talks to each other. We get three generations of some families coming in. I see people of all ages come on their own to start with and then gradually get to know other customers and forge new friendships. Many of our older regulars live alone and The Woodhall Arms is a central part of their routine; they come in every day to watch the sport and chat with their pals. Without it, they’d be sitting at home on their own. Two other pubs in the area closed recently. It’s been a terrible loss for their communities and their former regulars now travel to The Woodhall Arms for company.”

Amy Perrin, Founder of Marmalade Trust, Marmalade Trust says: “At Marmalade Trust we know just how prevalent loneliness is and we also know how important the role pubs play is in fostering connections. With Star Pubs’ support, we hope to be able to raise even more awareness of loneliness across all demographics in society, and most importantly to provide people with the resources that they need to feel and get more connected.”

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