It’s a phenomenon on the rise – people are seeking out bars offering leisure pursuits, not just drinking.
Going to the pub is no longer enough, it would seem. Increasingly, people are seeking out bars offering leisure pursuits such as darts, golf, table tennis and even axe throwing. These venues are one of the hottest trends in the leisure sector with new operators appearing regularly. The growth in this sector reflects consumers’ interest in combining social activities with drinking and eating – and of course is perfect for the social media age.
Four leading operators from the darts, escape room, urban mini-golf and even Canadian axe-throwing sectors presented their concepts for the LPF Seminar on Competitive Socialising, joining a panel discussion afterwards covering trends in the sector as well as the challenges of acquiring new sites.
Steve Moore – The Flight Club – CEO
The flight club is a venue providing the latest in computerised darts games alongside high-quality F&B. The company has venues across London in some of the capitals key locations.
Chris Legh – Junkyard Golf – Director and founder
Junkyard golf provides urban themed crazy-golf using recycled materials to provide fun venues aimed at a young urban demographic. They have units in London and Manchester and have recently been announced as one of the leisure anchors for the new Westgate Centre in Oxford.
Mark Talbot – Locked in a Room – Founding Shareholder
Locked in a Room are at the vanguard of the emerging escape room industry. Their venues provide multiple rooms capable of delivering a professional experience to large corporate bookings as well as teams of friends and families. The company has three venues across the UK and is looking to expand further.
Jools Whitehorn – Whistlepunks – Joint founder
Whistlepunks is a concept that allows customers to throw Canadian axes at large wooden targets and compete with each other in a fun and safe atmosphere. It offers its clients a genuinely different experience. The business emerged in East London and they currently have two venues in the UK.
Andrew Russell – Landsec – Portfolio Director, Retail Parks and Leisure
Andrew is a leading landlord with 20 year’s experience in the leisure sector, having worked for X-leisure and now Landsec. Landsec have signed competitive socialising brands in their properties and are proactively targeting the sector.