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Pubs and PatriotsThe Drink Crisis in Britain during World War One$
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Robert Duncan

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781846318955

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781846318955.001.0001

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State Purchase and the Waning of the Central Control Board

State Purchase and the Waning of the Central Control Board

(p.181) Chapter Eight State Purchase and the Waning of the Central Control Board
Pubs and Patriots

Robert Duncan

Liverpool University Press

This chapter considers the fateful final attempt by the CCB to introduce nationwide state purchase of the liquor trade. At this point, Britain came within a whisker of having a nationalised drinks industry, including all pubs, clubs and breweries. The Board failed in this endeavour and this inability to enact state purchase marks the nadir of the Board’s power. Its political capital, which had been plentiful early in the war, had been spent. From now on the work of the Board was tainted by association with a highly controversial scheme, representative in some eyes of the worst traits of tyrannical state interference. The CCB was thus damaged and henceforth had to face increased criticism. Moreover, while moderate licensing proposals were henceforth seen as acceptable larger, more ambitious CCB schemes, were deemed unworkable. The CCB was increasingly disliked and its continued intrusion in the social lives of the British public, when armament production had come to terms with the demands of war, was increasingly resented. The clock was ticking for the CCB and the end of the war brought an increasing number of calls for an end to its existence.

Keywords:   Nationalisation of drink industry, Alcohol production, Food, Class, Central Control Board

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