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Drink sales (2017)

Request

  1. The total amount of money spent on alcohol by MPs, staff and visitors to House of Commons bars and restaurants, broken down for the year 2016/17.
  2. The amounts of money in 1a) broken down by type of alcohol (e.g. £12,980 on beer, £54,975 on spirits, £91,250 on wine), broken down for the year 2016/17.
  3. A full breakdown of the number and brand of alcoholic drinks sold in House of Commons bars and restaurants for the year 2016/17 (e.g. the number of pints of Guinness, the number of bottles of champagne, the number of litres of Gordon's gin, the number of bottles of Sauvignon Blanc, the number of bottles of Becks, the number of litres of Bailey's, the number of bottles of Merlot, etc.)
  4. The operating profit/loss of House of Commons bars and restaurants, broken down for 2016/17.

 

 

Response

  1. The total amount of money spent on alcohol by MPs, staff and visitors to House of Commons bars and restaurants, broken down for the year 2016/17.
    and
  2. The amounts of money in 1a) broken down by type of alcohol (e.g. £12,980 on beer, £54,975 on spirits, £91,250 on wine), broken down for the year 2016/17.
    and
  3. A full breakdown of the number and brand of alcoholic drinks sold in House of Commons bars and restaurants for the year 2016/17 (e.g. the number of pints of Guinness, the number of bottles of champagne, the number of litres of Gordon's gin, the number of bottles of Sauvignon Blanc, the number of bottles of Becks, the number of litres of Bailey's, the number of bottles of Merlot, etc.)
    This information is held by the House of Commons.
    Table for details of alcohol sales in the House of Commons catering venues for the 2016/17 financial year, broken down by type of alcohol and the brand of drink.  
    Please note that the customers who use these venues include around 15,500 pass-holders (MPs’ staff, House staff, civil servants, contractors,  Peers, members of the Press Gallery, etc., as well as MPs). The customer base also includes over a million non-pass holding visitors to Parliament. Food and drink prices are regularly reviewed and set at levels benchmarked against similar outlets outside of Parliament.
  4. The operating profit/loss of House of Commons bars and restaurants, broken down for 2016/17.
    This information is held by the House of Commons.  However, information about income and costs for all the House of Commons Catering Services, since 2010, is publicly available on the parliamentary website.
    Information relating to income and costs for the 2016/17 financial year will be published and made available by August 2017. The information you have requested is being withheld under section 22 (intended for future publication) of the Act. Section 22 is a qualified exemption, and accordingly we have to consider whether the public interest is in withholding the information or in disclosing it. The arguments for and against disclosure are detailed below.
    The general argument in favour of releasing information is that there is a public interest in being able to scrutinise aspects of the House of Commons where that information might be easy to access and will not prejudice the House. Against disclosure the argument is the public interest in permitting public authorities to publish information in a manner and form and at a time of their own choosing.  It is a part of the effective conduct of public affairs that the general publication of information is a conveniently planned and managed activity within the reasonable control of public authorities.  Where the decision has been made in principle to publish, there is a reasonable entitlement to make arrangements to do so.