A village pub has had to stop showing Sky Sports because of a group of pensioners’ “disrespectful” behaviour.
Landlord Lisa Campbell says the Duke of York in Skirlaugh is a gastro pub serving quality food and drinks, but also has a smaller bar area where customers can pop in for a drink and watch any sport on television.
However, a group of pensioners has forced the owners of the pub to cancel their subscription to Sky Sports because of their behaviour while watching the television, which has affected the pub’s TripAdvisor reviews.
Ms Campbell, who has owned the pub for five years, said: “We’re not a restaurant, we’re a gastro pub, so people can still come in and enjoy a drink and watch the television, but I’m not having other people be rude and ruin the experience for diners.
“We have to tell them to quieten down and respect other customers whilst eating as they are helping keep the village pub open and not ruin other peoples’ night.
“We have had the TV on for the World Cup, offering a pizza and a pint, but we have turned the volume off and people have behaved well. It’s just this group, some of who are in their mid-70s, which have caused the problems previously.”
The pub has been transformed into a freehold, meaning Lisa is not bound by other breweries, and provides a dining experience for customers who travel from far and wide.
But now Lisa is worried the group have begun a vendetta against the pub since turning off Sky Sports, with TripAdvisor reviews popping up using what she believes to be fake accounts.
The pub is currently one of the highest rated pubs on the online reviewing platform, with 87 per cent excellent out of 435 reviews.
“Since I’ve stopped showing the sports, which we have subsidised for the last five years as a goodwill gesture, reviews have been popping up saying how rude the staff are and telling people there are far better places they can go to than here”, said Lisa. “I can assure you that my staff are not rude, and they wouldn’t be working for me if they were.
“We have managed to get a lot of them removed, but my husband has gone down to TripAdvisor head offices in London to get the rest sorted. We don’t rely on TripAdvisor for custom, we have a lot of repeat custom but the last thing we want is potential customers seeing these fake reviews and basing their decision to visit us on them.
“We are have worked so hard to keep this village pub going, and this group are so tunnel-visioned they don’t seem to realise the sale of only alcohol does not cover the buildings overheads nor the Sky Sports subscription.
“We have a very good name for food and hope to extend our dining space in the near future.”