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loneliness

54% of Brits say connections with strangers in pubs alleviates loneliness

Drink, Mental Health

Loneliness is a silent killer, but new research by HEINEKEN UK and The Marmalade Trust shows that the pub remains crucial in tackling it.

New research by HEINEKEN UK and loneliness charity The Marmalade Trust, has found that 54% of Brits say the random acts of connection they make with strangers in pubs helps to alleviate feelings of loneliness, and that almost one-third of Brits (30%) say that the pub is the place where they are most likely to have laughed or smiled during an exchange with a stranger. Over half (56%) say they’ve forged an ongoing friendship with a once-stranger they met down their local.

The place of pubs in the lives of Brits remains crucial, and contrary to certain cliches, it’s not simply about getting hammered and throwing chairs around. It really is about community and interaction and yes, combatting loneliness. Fact is, us reticent Brits like the social lubrication afforded by the pub.

When it comes to men, we believe – and have shown in some of The Book of Man’s events – tackling mental health has to involve pubs, where conversation can happen and people can legitimately open up in a way they wouldn’t feel comfortable elsewhere.

loneliness

This research seems to back this up, with pubs helping to tackle a real need: the research also showed that 85% of adults in the UK confess to having experienced loneliness in the last 12 months, and 47% of people yearn for more random acts of connection in their lives.

Loneliness is a genuine killer. Scientists have said it harms health more than alcohol, obesity, or smoking. We know it is dangerous tendency of men to seek isolation when they are struggling with depression, which can put them on a suicidal path.

But of course, loneliness is something we can all help to tackle in our communications with other people.

Ron Moody, CEO of the Marmalade Trust, says, “I am excited to highlight such insightful research carried out by our partners HEINEKEN UK, which underlines the vital role that pubs, amongst other social spaces, have in fostering human connection. At Marmalade Trust we believe it’s crucial to raise awareness that loneliness is a natural human emotion, one that affects people of all ages.”

To help this awareness, they have produced some literally conversation-starting posters that can be put up in pubs. They are spins on the WWII ‘Careless Talk Costs Lives’ artworks – ‘Careless Tale Improves Lives’ – to promote the idea that even casual chat, the tiniest conversation starters, can make a huge difference to those who are struggling.

loneliness

Says Moody, “Our partnership with HEINEKEN UK is invaluable in terms of helping to raise this awareness and remove the social stigma attached to loneliness. Together, we are dedicated to fostering this understanding and to building a more compassionate community…let’s start conversations, build connections, and support one another. Perhaps next time you are down at your local pub, ask them how their day is. You never know, it could lead to a lasting friendship.”

No doubt about it, tackling loneliness is vital and having these posters in your local may well prove to be a highly valuable aid.

For more information head to HEINEKEN UK and The Marmalade Trust.

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