Beer sales in the on-trade fell by 35 million pints in the most recently recorded period, according to the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

The drop between July and September represents a 3.6 per cent decline compared to the same period last year.

The trade group says the figures provide evidence the government should look to cut beer tax in the Budget later this month.

BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: "When the government was cutting or freezing beer duty from 2013-15, sales of British beer stabilised, after years of steep decline. With sales down this quarter, following the Budget tax hike, urgent action from the Chancellor is needed.

"Beer has had a 39 per cent tax rise in the past decade. With tax rates 14 times higher than in Germany, these levels are unsustainable.

"We need fair taxes for British beer, so that brewers and pub operators can invest in thriving pubs, and take advantage of new opportunities to export more beer around the world as we leave the EU."

The Budget is on November 22.