Showing posts from May, 2017

Why are London's licensing laws so restrictive?

24hourlondon is a solution to a problem: how to get the best from a city where the licensing laws often seem stacked against you. You can download the app in Android or iOSfrom here.

But why is London like this? What got us to this point?

James Nicholls' book,The politics of alcohol: a history of the drink question in England, suggests that the recent move to allow pubs to stay open later is a break with the deep past and that restricting pub opening hours has traditionally been seen by the government here as a way of restricting the alcohol intake of working people – to make us more productive capitalist worker bees.

As evidence for this theory, Nicholls points to what happened during the first world war, when the temperance - anti-booze - movement was big internationally. In the US it led to an unsuccessful attempt at complete Prohibition but in the UK its high water mark was the creation of the Central Control Board (CCB) in 1915, whose job it was to address the effect of drink…

Tell your friends that 24hourlondon is back in the saddle

It's been a long road for24hourlondon.

Back in 2012 we had had around 4,000 downloads but couldn't seem to make any headway on the business side. Often when we spoke to other companies about the next step for us they couldn't see the relevance of an app to their sector: in particular I remember a conversation with a taxi firm who couldn't see why digital marketing would be beneficial.

Since then Uber has happened and I guess it isn't a mystery to them any more.

It felt a lot like banging one's head against a wall.

Maybe we were just too early? It was dispiriting after all the time, energy and money we'd spent.

Then last year I wrote a piece for the Financial Times about unicorns in Europe. And I realised that the whole tech landscape had changed in four years: there was something resembling an ecosystem. My research led me through a labyrinth of accelerators, incubators and angel investor networks. I felt like Alice in Wonderland.

Maybe it was time to give …