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Friday 20 April 2018

Bar puts alarms in beer glasses after 4,000 are stolen in one year

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Tom Embury-Dennis

A bar in Belgium has decided to attach alarms to its beer glasses after drinkers stole 4,000 of them in just a year.

The Beer Wall, a popular bar in Bruges, installed the £3,550 (€4,020) security system eight months ago after hundreds of tourists made off with the iconic vessels.

Philip Maes, the owner, told The Independent the bar received as many as 700,000 visitors each year, some of whom did not see taking beer glasses as theft.

“It’s like taking something from a hotel… you don’t see it as stealing,” he said.

With the price of a glass anywhere between £2 (€2.26) and £8 (€9), Mr Maes put the total loss of merchandise at more than £8,800 (€9,966).

“One of the reasons I did it is because running after someone for two euros then having a discussion in the street with somebody who had some beers, that’s not a real thing to do,” he added.

Since installing the system, which features sensors on the bottom of the glasses that trip an alarm, just 100 more have disappeared. 

“If the alarm goes off then people turn back… it’s not like we’re going to run after them or call the police," said Mr Maes.

Beer is a serious business in Belgium, which has about 1,600 different types, all of which should be served in their own unique glass. They come in a vast array of shapes and sizes, from goblets to imitation half-coconut shells.

Stealing a glass from a pub is considered a major faux-pas in the country, with tourists and students considered the major culprits.

Independent News Service

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