Ads for pubs and nightclubs banned for encouraging excessive drinking

A banned ad for The Hive in Edinburgh (ASA/PA)
A banned ad for The Hive in Edinburgh (ASA/PA)

A number of pubs in England and Scotland have been reprimanded by the advertising watchdog for breaking strict alcohol rules by encouraging excessive drinking.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned three Instagram posts and a Facebook post for The Hive, a nightclub in Edinburgh, which included text such as: “Not only do I dance like nobody is watching, I also drink as if I don’t work in the morning,” and “Drinks from £1.”

City Clubs (Edinburgh), trading as The Hive, said they accepted that the posts were not socially responsible and had removed them.

The ASA noted that all the posts included a caption that gave the prices of drinks alongside details about events that were being held at The Hive.

It said: “We acknowledged that the ads were intended to be light-hearted. However, we considered they nonetheless condoned and encouraged excessive drinking and therefore were socially irresponsible and breached the Code.”

A banned ad for The Hive nightclub in Edinburgh. (ASA/PA)
A banned ad for The Hive nightclub in Edinburgh. (ASA/PA)

The ASA banned a TikTok post for Lulu, another nightclub in Edinburgh, which featured clips of women holding drinks, having drinks poured from bottles of spirits into their mouths, and dancing while in a nightclub.

Montpeliers (Edinburgh), trading as Lulu, accepted that some of the clips did not show responsible drinking and also acknowledged that some of the individuals featured in the post were not clearly over the age of 25.

Two further posts on the Instagram account of cocktail bar The Spiritualist in Glasgow were banned for condoning and encouraging excessive drinking and featuring a person who appeared to be under 25.

Signature Pubs, trading as The Spiritualist, said the posts had been removed.

Finally, two Facebook posts and an Instagram post for the Slug & Lettuce in Glasgow and an Instagram post for Popworld in Leeds also featured people who appeared to be under 25 years old and encouraged excessive drinking, the regulator said.

The Instagram post for Popworld featured the text: “When your pal hands you another shot and you’re not sure you can handle it but you take it anyway…”

Stonegate Pub Company, trading as the Slug & Lettuce, Glasgow and Popworld, Leeds acknowledged that the ads “possibly breached the Code” and said they had removed them.

They added that they were reviewing their other social media ads and would remove any that were similar.