1,829 Pubs Close Doors

Drinks Industry Group of Ireland analysis shows 21.2% (1,829) of pubs closed between 2005 and 2021.

There was a decrease in pubs in every county in Ireland, while 4.9% (349) of pubs closed throughout pandemic period 2019 - 2021, Laois most affected reporting a 30.6% decline, while Meath suffered the least with a mere 1.4% decline. Twenty three counties had decreases in the number of pubs of greater than 10%. 

The Irish Pub: Stopping the Decline report, based on the group’s analysis of Revenue license data and including an economic and social analysis by Dublin City University (DCU) Associate Professor Emeritus and economist Anthony Foley, shows a 21.2% decline in the number of pubs in Ireland from 2005 to 2021.

Anthony Foley notes that public houses contribute to the culture and vibrancy of villages, small towns, and rural areas in many ways. They contribute to tourism and provide an extensive network of physical facilities and services needed by tourists and locals.

He cites concerns for the impact of the decline on rural Ireland, when taken in the context of wider challenges facing areas outside Dublin. Considering the decreases in the number of post offices, full bank branches, Garda stations, local retail enterprises and a wide range of other services and facilities, there are concerns about the commercial capability of small towns and villages with large levels of commercial building vacancy.