Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a license?

The law states that in most cases you require a license wherever Alcohol is sold or entertainment provided, in most cases you don’t need a license if the drink is free of charge and the entertainment part of a private party, however it’s best to check with your local governing body if you are in a any doubt. If we’re running your bar for you we will apply for a TENs licence for the day that will cover the drink and entertainment. We may charge a small amount for the license so please ask us for details.

What time will you serve until?

This will depend on the location of the venue, neighbours, access etc. In most cases though, Midnight is normally acceptable. Later extensions can be obtained, but are often difficult to get and may include an additional cost.

Do you supply glasses?

If we’re running the bar or supplying drink or corkage we will bring the glasses. In most cases we’re unable to supply sufficient glasses for an entire event without washing on-site, so a washing area, power and water will be required.

Do you use glass or plastic ‘glasses’?

Unless stipulated we will supply glass ‘glasses’. We can provide plastic if required (a normal requirement for horse and livestock paddocks) please ask for prices.  For large events and where partying might be ‘enthusiastic’ we often recommend switching to plastic after 7pm.

Can I hire the Bar unit on its own?

Please drop us a line for bar hire details and current pricing including; bar units, glasses, ice buckets, tongs, measures, pumps, optics etc.

Can I hire your services to run a free bar or where I provide the drink?

Yes we do offer a full ‘free’ bar service and can supply staff, bars, glasses, cleaning etc. Please ask us for a quote.

Can I hire glasses from you?

Yes, we have a wide range of glasses for hire and will be pleased to quote.

Can I bring my own table wine or toast drinks?

You may find our corkage option easier but we’re happy for you to supply your own wine for the tables if you prefer. We would not normally start bar service or have staff on site whilst you’re providing your own drinks as it’s not cost viable for us, however, we can open the bar and staff it if required at a one off cost of £400.  If we are providing a licensed bar, either free or paid, we would need to agree the amount of wine that will be provided in advance. This ensures that we can control the amount of alcohol being consumed for legal reasons and also protect our bar service from unexpected overheads and losses.

If providing your own drink please take into consideration the following to avoid complications on the day of the event:

1) We cannot guarantee that there will be space in the catering area to store your wine on site either before or during the event, therefore you may need somewhere to put the drink before it’s put on the tables.

2) We cannot guarantee the security of your drink either before or during the event and cannot accept responsibility for it under any circumstances. There will probably not be any security outside of the event and wine is desirable!

3) Some drinks are served better chilled. You may need to consider refrigeration or delivering the drink already chilled. Unfortunately we only bring refrigeration to a site if required, so are unlikely to have either spare fridge room or space/power for a fridge unless previously agreed. Please note that in many cases there will not be easy vehicle access so you may need to consider bringing a barrow along to cut down on your journeys.

4) We pay for trade waste to get rid of our event rubbish. Please make sure that you allocate a person/people to collect the bottles after use and dispose of them accordingly (don’t forget dustbin bags or equivalent boxes as stale wine doesn’t smell very nice in the boot of a car). Empty bottles and waste must normally be cleared from a venue before lunchtime on the following day, or earlier if there is a follow on event – unopened bottles can be left behind as we find them easy to dispose of 🙂

5) You will need glasses for wine, flutes for champagne etc. We can hire these to you, subject to availability, however if you supply your own you will need to consider storage and delivery as mentioned in 1, 2 & 3 above. You will also need to make provision for collection of the glasses and correct disposal of breakages (4).

6) We cannot guarantee to be on site to sign for your own drinks or glasses, unless previously agreed, so please make sure that there is someone present to receive/dispatch them.

7) Glasses are normally hired clean and returned dirty (with a washing fee), but hire from supermarkets often means that glasses need to go back clean. Please be aware that we cannot guarantee washing facilities, hot or cold water or the space for washing, unless previously arranged.

8) The glasses for table wine will normally need to be placed on the tables a few hours before the event as tables may not be set before and the glasses will cloud if left overnight in a marquee. If your caterer hasn’t agreed to put the glasses out you will need to make sure that you find someone to do it for you. The glasses will most probably need polishing (even new glasses are dull when they come out of a transport box).

9) As with the drink in 4 above, the glasses and waste need to be collected before midday following the event or earlier if a follow on event is planned, please note that due to residue smells and danger to wildlife all dregs and broken glass should be removed from the venue and gardens.

10) It is normal for caterers to leave before table wine glasses are finished with, and it therefore falls to the bar staff to clear wine glasses from the tables and other glass wear from outside drinks receptions etc. If you’re providing your own glasses the bar will not have staff for clearing so you will need to allocate a person/persons to clear the tables during the event and box/wash the glasses afterwards.

11) If you’re providing a reception drink you will also need to consider if you need tables, tablecloths, serving staff, trays, ice buckets, tongs, measures, ice etc.

Whilst the idea of bringing your own drink might sound appealing it’s not an ideal situation in many cases. It’s worth checking out our corkage options or supply prices as easier alternatives.

Do you offer Corkage?

Yes we offer a corkage option that takes away the hassle of providing your own drink and includes:

1) Chilling and refrigeration of drink as necessary on the morning of the event (facilities, refrigeration etc. will not necessarily be available before).

2) Placing the drink as required.

3) Glasses (including delivery and collection).

4) Placing and polishing glasses.

5) Clearing glasses.

6) Washing glasses (extra charges may apply)

7) Waste and breakage removal.

8) Please ask for corkage prices and availability.

Can my Caterers supply the table wine?

This relates to the questions above.  Caterers do often provide arrival drinks and wine etc. However, please be aware that the sale of alcohol needs to be licensed.  You’re caterer will need to either have their own premises license to sell alcohol in advance, or apply for a TEN to sell on the day. It’s not possible to have two TEN licenses at the same time in the same area, so this may effect the bar service.

Do you serve pump or bottled beers?

We can do either or a mixture of both, it really depends on your preference and numbers. If we bring cask or barrel beers we need to be fairly certain that we’re going to sell the beer, as you can see from our prices we don’t charge a fortune and therefore obviously need to be sure we don’t run at a loss at the event. If you have reasonable guest numbers and believe that pumps would be an advantage we would probably bring barrelled lager/ale, however for lower numbers we would probably recommend a bottled bar so we can ensure there’s a choice of beers. If you would like pumps, but have low numbers, we will happily bring them, however we charge a deposit of £98 for the first barrel of ale or lager, which is refunded at £1.00 for each pint sold.

What spirits do you offer?

We bring a wide selection of spirits including all of the popular makes you would expect to find at a bar such as Gin, Vodka, Whisky, Brandy, Tequila, Jägermeister, Malibu, Amaretto etc. etc. and only use recognised brands such as Smirnoff, Gordons, Baileys etc. We try to bring what we believe will be popular so we will always ask you for preferences before the event. Sometimes we switch between suppliers and may for instance bring Absolut Vodka rather than Smirnoff, but we will always try to meet requests where possible.  Our stock for average size bars includes up to 15 Gins, 11 Whiskeys & Brandies. 5 Rums and 6 Vodkas!

Do you serve cocktails?

We can offer a selection of basic cocktails on a normal bar if requested. We do drinks like baby Guinness, Jaeger bombs etc. as standard on bars, and will do cocktails if serving time allows. We often limit cocktails to times when the bar is quieter (i.e. not at arrival time) so as not to slow down service.

What wines do you offer?

We stock Pinot, Sauvignon, Rose, White Zinfandel, Merlot, Malbec and Prosecco as standard, which is for sale by the glass or bottle.  We have a comprehensive wine list for table wine that is available for advance purchase or upgrade to a package.  Wine tasting packages are available for table wine selection if required, please ask for details.

Do you take the waste away?

Of course; if we bring it, we take it back.

When will you set-up?

We like to set up in plenty of time, so at least 2 hours before the event, and often longer if we’re bringing in the bar unit as well. Some ales will need to sit for more than 8 hours before serving so we may need earlier access on some occasions.

When will you clear away?

We will normally clear and take away immediately after the event, however bar units may be collected at an agreed time/date.

How many staff do you put on a bar?

That all depends on how many guests there will be. We like to avoid queues at the bar, but we can’t afford to over-staff (not at our cheap prices anyway!), so we will gauge the staffing against requirements. A typical bar for 120 guests would be 3 to 4 staff switching between bar service and clearing.

Can you supply drinking water?

Under regulations a serviced bar must provide drinking water free of charge where able. If we’re in a hall or venue with water on tap we are more than happy to comply with the requirements, however if piped drinking water isn’t available we will need to collect container water for washing and cleaning. Container water carries a taste with it that whilst being fit for drinking has an unpleasant taste, we therefore sell bottled water over the bar as an alternative.

We can offer table water in jugs with ice or water on arrival, please ask for a price.

Can my guests bring their own drink?

Unfortunately not; if we’re operating under our licensing, and are licensing the premises under an issued TEN, we have a duty of care to control the alcohol supplied. If your guests bring their own drink we’re unable to stop them from drinking past a point at which they’re becoming a nuisance to others or a danger to themselves, and this breaks the terms of our license.

We charge a £100 deposit for the booking, this is refunded if your guest numbers are roughly as expected and your guests don’t bring their own drink.

We cannot accept unregulated drinking within the licensed premises and we will not usually be involved with an event that allows unregulated drinking outside of the licensed premises (i.e. in the garden or associated paddock). If you intend to include self-provided alcohol please ask us beforehand so that we can make an educated decision as to whether to provide our services or not.

Are you strict on age checks?

We are a professional bar company and as such we operate to strict licensing regulations.  It is our policy to age verify any persons attempting to purchase alcohol that are lucky enough to look under 21. 

 Will you close the bar early ever?

We reserve the right to close the bar early if guests stop using it and it becomes unviable to leave it open. This doesn’t happen very often, but sometimes there are only a handful of guests left at the end of the night and we simply can’t justify the staff costs.  In this case we will give plenty of notice and a chance for guests to ‘stock up’ before we close.

We also reserve the right to close the bar without notice (as in a normal pub) if there is any ‘trouble’ within the licensed area, if there are drugs on the premises or if our staff are made to feel uncomfortable.

Can I come and see you?

We often get asked if it’s possible to visit us, understandably you want to make sure that you’re dealing with a real bar company before booking, and a personal visit gives the best reassurance that your chosen company is real and will turn up on the day!  If you Google The Midge Inn Hatton, you will see that our trading address shows a semi derelict pub, this is because we actually trade from the barns to the rear of the property.  We are currently working on the pub and hope to have it open soon.  We do, however, have our main bars at The County Assembly Rooms in Lincoln, where you’re welcome to come and see us and our drink selection.