The Pub: A British InstitutionThe pub (short for “public house” ) is a traditional feature of towns and villages throughout Britain. Some pubs are hundreds of years old. Pubs are sometimes called inns. The first inns were started by monks. They were safe places where pilgrims and other travellers could stay for a night. You can buy all kinds of drinks in pubs. Beer is the most popular, but you can also buy spirits and soft drinks. (In Britain, children under 18 may not buy or drink alcohol.) A pub is not just a place to drink. it Is also a social centre where you can talk to people and play traditional pub games like darts and bar billiards. Some pubs have live music. Many pubs have a garden where you can sit in fine weather. Some have children’s play areas. Pubs often serve snacks and some have proper restaurants where you can get full meals. Pubs are often open from 11.00 a.m. to 11.00 p.m., especially in the summer. But sometimes they are closed in the afternoon.
Children under the age of 14 are not usually allowed inside a pub. But they can go into the pub restaurant with adults or sit in the garden. Pubs usually have painted signboards, with the name of the pub and a picture. The names often tell you about a famous person, a craft or trade, or a feature of country life.