Manchester raises glass to royal couple

By Alex Johnston, Charlotte Duncker, Phil Sim & Ben Lugg

Ecstatic alcohol sellers in Manchester are enjoying a celebration of their own following booming sales over the royal wedding weekend.

People took advantage of the four day break as off licences saw a significant rise in the amount of alcohol that they sold leading up to the wedding.

Spirited Wines, a wine merchant in Deansgate, said their takings were up five times that of a normal weekend.

“The wedding fell at a great time and we had to take full advantage,” a spokesman for the off licence said.

“We sold more champagne and fizzy wines over the weekend than in the last three months,” he added.

JW Lees, a brewer based in Middleton, who developed a special royal wedding pint for the occasion, saw impressive sales.

Emma Cartlidge, a spokeswoman for the brewery, said: “We sold nearly 11500 pints in total over a seven week period.”

Sales were helped by a relaxation in licensing laws over the weekend, and The Centre for Retail Research had predicted alcohol sales alone would amount to £76.5 million.

Traders in Manchester hope that the weekend of the royal wedding was just the beginning of a successful summer, and are already looking to this summer’s must-have drinks.

Ronald Findochty, a spokesman for a Manchester off licence, said “Rum is selling well this year as people are turning to more exotic drinks like mojitos.”

Alcohol sellers will hope the good weather continues to help the industry recover following the hard hitting recession.

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