IN CHESHIRE East, 40 pubs and bars have closed their doors for good since 2010, according to official figures.

Figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that in 2010 there were 355 pubs and bars in the area but, by 2017, that number had fallen to 315.

A change in consumer habits, with people drinking at home more often, has been also been blamed for fewer people visiting pubs.

An assistant general manager at The Old Sessions, in Knutsford’s Princess Street, said: “We are a pretty traditional British pub to our roots, offering up a great selection of cask ales and good-quality wines so there is something for everyone. We do sometimes bring in live music which tends to draw a few new faces in.

“We do have a lot of regular customers who we can often get it down to the day and time they will come in and see us. I do not think that the pub trade is dying off, it just depends on how you retain the customers you have.”

CAMRA, the campaign for real ale, said that pubs play a vital role in communities.

Tom Stainer, the chief communications officer, said: "In many areas and villages, they provide the last remaining public meeting space, with meeting halls and post offices already lost.

"They also create jobs and bring money into local areas, which tend to then be spent in the local area, as compared to large chains. Many pubs help to support the night time economy in town centres and look to create safer communities after nightfall."

Pubs have also been pointing the finger of blame at the taxman for their troubles, complaining about the duty on beer, VAT levels and the cost of business rates.

Can you remember any pubs in Middlewich, Knutsford or Wilmslow that have closed down? Let us know in the comments.