UK's best locations for beer gardens based on sunshine, rain and price

Do you live near the best beer gardens in the UK? Study reveals Britain’s best locations for outdoor boozers – based on sunshine, rainfall and price of beer

  • Southend-on-Sea is in first place, followed by Wolverhampton and Southampton
  • Northampton, Blackpool, Reading, Coventry and Stoke-on-Trent also in top ten

Southend-on-Sea has been crowned the best place in the UK for beer gardens – with judges praising its sunny weather, lack of rain and affordability of alcohol.

The Essex seaside city was noted for its average pint costing £3.50 – with cocktails at £8 and soft drinks at £1.18, according to the study by credit card company Aqua.

The report also said outdoor drinkers in Southend enjoy 238 hours of sunshine per month in summer, plus the least rainfall of any UK city at 45mm (1.8in) per month.

In second place was Wolverhampton which has the cheapest average pint in any UK city at £2.75 – with soft drinks costing £1.15, and 281 beer gardens to choose from.

Southampton was in third place, noted for its warm summer temperatures and 213 beer gardens – while Northampton was in fourth, Blackpool fifth and Reading sixth.

The beer gardens in the Old Leigh area of Leigh-on-Sea – a town located west of Southend-on-Sea, which is also part of the city’s unitary authority area – are popular with outdoor drinkers

Making up the rest of the top ten were Coventry, Stoke-on-Trent and Dudley – while Newport was the only mention from Wales, coming in seventh place.

Full list: The top ten UK places for beer gardens

There were no Scottish cities in the list – but Edinburgh came in as the fifth most expensive place for a pint at an average of £5. London was top of the table at £6.

Other locations in the top five for most expensive pints were Belfast, Swindon and Norwich. But Blackpool, Bradford and Derby all had an average of just £3.

For non-alcoholic alternatives, Bradford is the best for soft drinks, with a 330ml bottle of Coca-Cola costing an average of just £0.94. Blackpool was second at £0.95, and Swindon in third with £1.10.

The study also found which UK locations have the most pub gardens in comparison to their population.

Top of that list was Dudley, which boasts 199 beer gardens for every 100,000 people. In second was Manchester, with 165 beer gardens per 100,000 people.

The research was carried out by Aqua which also issued advice on how to avoid spending too much when at the pub.

Sharvan Selvam, the company’s commercial director, said: ‘When faced with lots of social plans, or even just the lure of long afternoons enjoying the sunshine with friends and family, it’s easy to spend more than you had planned.

The Shrewsbury Arms in Albrighton, just outside Wolverhampton, is noted for its beer garden. The city of Wolverhampton came second of the list of the UK’s best cities for beer gardens

The Winston Bar Hotel and Grill in Southampton is also known for its beer garden. The city came third on the list thanks to its warm summer temperatures and 213 beer gardens

The Wooden Walls of Old England in Collingtree is an example of a well-known beer garden in the Northampton area. The town came fourth in the list of top locations for beer gardens

‘Putting a budget in place is the first step in helping you stay in control of your money. If you feel pressured to overspend, communicate your goals with friends and family and look for budget friendly alternatives.

‘Make sure you don’t compare yourself to others either as everyone’s financial situation is different. It’s important to do what’s best for you and your future.’

The study was released as the Met Office revealed today was the UK’s hottest day of the year so far, with 24.8C (76.6F) recorded at Porthmadog in North Wales.

Forecasters have also said May has been a very dry month for Britain that has seen just over half the normal amount of rainfall experts would expect. 

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