Marston's has long been pushing its F-plan – a focus on families, females, food and over-40s. Yesterday its trading update gave evidence that it may be possible to do well from a rather more traditional approach, selling decent beer in nice pubs.
"Wet" sales were up 4.8 per cent in the 16 weeks to 21 January, though food sales were even better, up 5.5 per cent.
The company, which already runs more than 2,000 pubs, is pushing ahead with plans to open another 25 pub-restaurants in this financial year.
It said that Marston's beer brands, including Pedigree and Banks's, outperformed the market with own-brewed beer volumes 2 per cent above last year.