Closing bars after half time ‘won’t halt’ drunken behaviour at ‘world’s largest pub’
New trial measures at the Principality Stadium this weekend don’t go far enough for some
The Welsh Rugby Union will close bars and serve weaker beer in the Principality Stadium for Wales’ three home Six Nations matches against Scotland, Italy and France.
The trial means bars inside the Principality will close after half-time and the 5% volume Heineken lager will be replaced by a 4.1% Amstel Bier.
The new rules follow high-profile incidents of drunken behavior at the Autumn Internationals with a pitch invader marring one match and a six-year-old child being vomited on in another.
Rugby journalist Peter Jackson described the Principality as the “world’s largest pub”.
He said: “It’s not as if the WRU are saying bars will shut at half-time, they’re saying bars will close after half-time. Your view of the game is being constantly impaired because people are going in the opposite direction.
“Any organization which promotes an event which results in a six-year-old boy, Joey Delaney, getting vomited upon by drunk fans has to rethink its approach. Unless something is done there is going to be a serious accident.
“I can remember Wales versus the Springbok’s 15 years ago. As spectators were filtering out of the stands a number of middle-aged men leant over into the press box. One of them tried to put his fist through the laptop of my South African colleague.
“We either get serious about this and tackle it properly or not at all.”
In a press release, the WRU says: “It is not clear if there is a casual relationship between alcohol consumption and any poor behaviour at matches, with other factors like kick-off times to consider.”
WRU’s Performance Director, Nigel Walker, said: “There were incidents during the Autumn Internationals but they were not the norm. We’re asking people to come but to enjoy themselves within reason.”