State Management Scheme

State Management Scheme

The State Management Scheme (known locally as 'The Scheme') saw the UK government take over and run the brewing, distribution and sale of liquor in three regions of the UK from 1916 until 1973. [cite web|url=|last=Seabury|first=Olive|accessdate =|title=The Carlisle State Management Scheme: Its Ethos and Architecture. A 60 year experiment in regulation of the liquor trade |publisher= Bookcase Carlisle | id= ISBN 978-1-904147-30-5] The main centre was the Carlisle and District scheme, which was near to the armament factories that were founded in 1916 supplying explosive and shells to the British Army during the First World War.

There were initially three schemes, Carlisle & Gretna, Cromarty Firth and Enfield. In 1921 Carlisle and Gretna were split into two separate areas, Carlisle was the large part and supplied some beer to Gretna. Then in 1922 Enfield was ended and the public houses sold back to private enterprise. The Cromarty Firth scheme did not do any brewing.

The Scheme was denationalised by Heath's 1971 Conservative Government and assets sold off at auction in roughly six lots, mostly to established major brewing interests.


A central pillar of the Scheme was the ethos of distinterested management; managers of pubs had no incentive to sell liquor, this supported the aim of reducing drunkenness and its effects on the arms industry.

The Scheme also had a 'No Treating' policy which forbade the buying of rounds which operated from 1916 to 1919.


Significant to the scheme was the extensive redevelopment; refurbishment of existing pubs, much demolition and replacement of substandard premises, most of these were designed by the Scheme's chief architect Harry Redfern and in his New Model Inn style which influenced the design of public houses in the rest of the UK.


Further reading

* "The Carlisle State Management Scheme: Its Ethos and Architecture", Olive Seabury, Bookcase Carlisle 2007, ISBN 978-1-904147-30-5

* "A City Under The Influence - The story of half a century of state pubs", John Hunt, Lakescene 1971, ISBN 978-0950212005

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