At a time when we are more connected than ever before, with many of us sharing ‘our best lives’ on social media, new research by HEINEKEN UK reveals that almost half (46%) of adult Brits experience feelings of loneliness at least once a week.
To coincide with Loneliness Awareness Week (12 – 18 June), the research reveals that almost the same number of Brits (45%) will conceal their loneliness by fibbing to friends about what they did at the weekend.
Instead of enjoying busy, exciting, fun-filled time with friends, they are too embarrassed or ashamed to say they spent the weekend alone.
Further to this, Brits are quite comfortable telling lies about their fake weekend social plans with friends: 40% will say they went to the pub, 36% fib about going into town, while 34% will cite fictitious shopping trips with company.
Despite loneliness within the community being rather prevalent, the silver lining is that Brits are in fact longing for more moments of social interaction – 45% say they would like to go on more night’s out, but they just don’t get the invites.
The findings come as HEINEKEN UK announces its new charity partner – Marmalade Trust, one of the UK’s leading loneliness charities, which is dedicated to raising awareness of loneliness and helping people to make more social connections.
Together, HEINEKEN UK and Marmalade Trust will work together on a number of initiatives designed to combat loneliness.
They include introducing loneliness awareness training for HEINEKEN colleagues and rolling out fundraising and conversation starter kits across its 2,400 strong Star Pubs & Bars estate.
Lawson Mountstevens, Managing Director of Star Pubs & Bars at HEINEKEN UK, says:
“Most of us experience loneliness at some point in our lives, but the study shows almost half of us experience it on a weekly if not daily basis.
“While it’s nothing to be ashamed of, it’s something that we need to talk about and address.
“Social connections are key to helping people who are experiencing feelings of loneliness. Pubs are at the heart of communities.
“They are places where we can meet family and friends, make new connections, laugh, share problems, and build bonds with people over a cider or beer.
“Partnering with Marmalade Trust is a natural fit for us – we’re going to work together with them to build a more connected world.”
Amy Perrin, Founder of Marmalade Trust, says:
“We’re thrilled to be partnering with Heineken on a cause which is incredibly important to both of us.
“At Marmalade Trust we know just how prevalent loneliness is amongst those living in the UK and we also know how important the role pubs can play in bringing people together and fostering connections.
“With Heineken’s support, we hope to be able to raise even more awareness of loneliness across all demographics in society, and most importantly continue to provide people with the resources that they need to feel and get more connected.”
Adam Griffiths, the owner of The Duke of Wellington pub in Chewmoor-Lostock has set up a Local Friendship Group which has led to group members now participating in pub quizzes and visiting the pub at other times to socialise.
“Being at the heart of the community, pubs can and do play a central part in bringing people together.
“Putting on events, providing people with a reason to come out, and opportunities to talk to one another is essential for the health and wellbeing of everyone.”
HEINEKEN UK’s partnership with Marmalade Trust follows numerous initiatives that have brought people together under its ‘Brewing Good Cheer’ Christmas platform.
Thousands of people have gathered together and forged connections in pubs across the country as part of the campaign which has run since 2016.