LONDON – Prime Minister Tony Blair’s father-in-law has criticized the government’s plan to allow pubs to serve liquor 24 hours a day, saying the change in opening hours is “wrong, muddle-headed and terribly dangerous.” Tony Booth, a well-known television actor, wrote in an op-ed article in Saturday’s Daily Mail newspaper that he was a “serious boozer” himself for 20 years. Booth, the father of the prime minister’s wife, Cherie, said, “This isn’t me taking a cheap shot at a government that happens to be headed by my son-in- law. No, this is simply me recognizing how close alcohol came to destroying my own life.” He said he has not had an alcoholic drink for 26 years, but that he was worried about the law change regarding pubs, which goes into effect on Thursday. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals “Longer licensing hours won’t suddenly turn us into a nation of Mediterranean sophisticates happy to make a small glass of red wine last an hour or two at some pavement cafe. In this country, we don’t drink that way. We drink in a more primitive, frightening, Anglo-Saxon way. We drink to get drunk,” Booth wrote. “Introduce 24-hour opening as, quite astonishingly, the government is now planning to do, and some people will never be sober again,” he added. Supporters of the law say it will bring an end to the scramble to imbibe as much alcohol as possible in the last minutes before a pub’s closing time and will thus cut down on drink-fueled violence. Of Britain’s 200,000 licensed pubs, only about 700 have applied to open around the clock under the new law. Forty percent have applied to change their licenses, however, to allow live music, serve food after 11 p.m. or serve alcohol later. Blair’s government is also cracking down on binge drinking and alcohol-fueled violence. Police will target bars and clubs that sell alcohol to those younger than 18, and issue on-the-spot fines to rowdy drunks.