e present decline in the licensing trade. Hardly a day goes by without another public house closing, falling victim to the downward spiral in the wet trade that will never return.

True, the typical English pub is a dinosaur within an industry which, if it fails to change, will in due course become extinct. And change it must.

Many pubs are already looking at other ways and means they can generate the cash to pay brewery rents. Food accommodation and social events are just a few of the alternatives on offer, but the real casualties will be sporting and working men’s clubs, which, for so long have been the bedrock of our society.

These clubs will find it harder to adapt and change their ways. For years sports clubs have relied on bar profits and volunteer labour to break even in a cut throat business. But with the demise of the wet trade, it is these clubs that are next in line.

With profit margins constantly being eroded by the greed of pub companies across the country who are prepared to sell to anyone at any price, it is always going to be the smallest and most vulnerable which are picked off first.

The Kidlington Recreational Trust, set up in 1972, placed the recreational grounds of the village in trust to prevent their disposal to fund building projects.

The trust is self-funded by the sports clubs and affiliates that rent the facilities. However, the trust’s primary funding partner has always been Kidlington Sports and Social Club in Yarnton Road.

It is no secret that this club, like so many, is being faced with hard times which will in turn affect the residents of Kidlington.

With the potential demise of its primary funding partner, the trust ,which is obliged to maintain these sports grounds, has few options.

The potential increase in rent to other sports clubs will see increased subscriptions at youth football clubs across the village.

The playgroup located at Park Hill would be faced with similar increases.

In addition, it is likely that cuts to non-essential services will take place. But the biggest consequence will surely be the loss of some £4,000 which the trust allocates each year to projects to enhance our recreation grounds and facilities.

While the Sports and Social Club might not be everybody’s cup of tea it has much to offer, including a large function room and is the home of Kidlington Football Club, who are riding high in the Hellenic League.

If you are local, why not pop in and have a drink and a look around. We are going to need your support, before it’s too late.

Nick Duval, Chairman, Kidlington Recreational Trust