The original ‘Beer Houses’ or ‘Tom and Jerry Shops’ as they became known, are viewed by many as the birth place of today’s pub. At this point in time beer was a rich man’s drink because of its high tax levels. The poor drank gin and lots of it, mostly in illegal gin shops.
Then in 1830, in an attempt to reduce public drunkenness, improve the health of the nation and encourage free trade, The Beer Act was passed. The act allowed anyone that paid a small fee to brew beer and sell it in their home, Beer Houses were born. It even allowed a low ABV beer, called Table Beer to be brewed for children, women and servants as the tap water was so unsafe!
A new generation of beer drinkers were born.