We believe that the interests of responsible, entrepreneurial pub businesses need to be aligned to the interests of their local communities and consumers. We seek to provide a friendly, safe and controlled environment as well as promoting the key contribution pubs can make to their local community. Some of our key initiatives and activities are outlined below.
With over 4,500 pubs across England and Wales, Ei Group has the opportunity to touch a sizeable number of local communities, offering employment opportunities and amenities that meet the needs of local people. The most effective way to do this is through partnerships with our publicans, as they are the people that live within the communities and should work at building lasting relationships within the local areas, and remaining sensitive to local issues. The best pubs provide a friendly, safe, inclusive and controlled environment, and make a positive contribution to the local population.
Pub is the Hub
We continue to support the philosophy and ethos of the campaign initiated by The Prince of Wales and called “Pub is the Hub' that encourages rural publicans to diversify and deliver a wider range of services to the communities they serve. This will help secure the longer term success of the pub and keep it at the heart of the local community. Many of our publicans have developed a range of community services including post offices, village shops and even 'out of hours' shop vending machines selling everyday essentials.
Supporting industry trade bodies and associates
We support a number of key trade bodies and associations including The BBPA (British Beer & Pub Association). The BBPA are the leading body representing Britain's brewers and pub companies and strive to promote and protect one of the nation's most iconic and important industries.
We work with the Federation of Licensed Victuallers Associations (FLVA), an organisation looking after the business interests of self-employed licensees in the licensed trade.
The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) is the professional body for the licensed retail sector and it has charitable status and a remit to raise professional standards. We work closely with the BII on a variety of initiatives that support our publicans and the industry; we assist all new Ei Group publicans with their subscription to the BII.
Ei Group is committed to supporting and encouraging our employees to give something back by leading or participating in charitable events. The Group operates a Charity Committee consisting of employee representatives. One of the roles of the Committee is to agree Ei Group donations to sponsor employees in their individual challenges. Some examples of these challenges include running the London Marathon, taking part in Race for Life and completing a 140 mile cycle ride across the north of England. We have donated a total of £4,150 over the course of the FY18 financial year for these events.
The Committee also organises fundraising events at its Head Office including bake sales, raffles, selection box and Easter egg donations and a Christmas Jumper Day. These events support a number of charities including Macmillan, Women’s Aid and Save the Children.
Ei Group have worked as a Corporate Partner for The Royal British Legion for the past four years, with the partnership coming to a conclusion in December 2018. In that time Ei Group raised almost £90,000 for the charity through a variety of initiatives. During the lead up to Remembrance Day Ei Group offered “Poppy Beer” on sale to publicans, brewed by Marston’s Brewery, with 20p from every pint sold donated to The Legion so they can continue their good work supporting veterans and serving members of our Armed Forces.
We have recently announced we will be continuing to work with Stride Ventures again in 2019, supporting their Pub Pros programme. The work readiness programme, mainly targeted at sixth formers, with the aim of informing and inspiring pupils about careers in pubs whilst building employability skills such as teamwork, leadership, assertiveness and critical thinking.
Through our managed business we have sought to align our ethos of being involved in and supporting the communities in which we operate with Craft Union Pub Company, part of Ei Managed Operations, successfully supporting a number of local charities which are chosen by operators in support of local causes and needs. Craft Union Pub Company also support Only a Pavement Away (OAPA), a charity set up to help the homeless, ex-service personnel, ex-offenders and the more vulnerable within our society, into employment and reintegrate back into society.
Bermondsey Pub Company, also part of Ei Managed Operations, are a supporter of mental health charity Mind. The Bermondsey team hold coffee mornings, raffles and fantasy football leagues as well as recently completing a sky dive and a 27 mile walk all in aid of the charity.