Pub bans all under-21s for repeatedly breaking COVID rules and their 'sense of entitlement'

·3-min read
The Old Neighbourhood Inn in Stroud has banned under-21s from entering due to recent behaviour. (Google)
The Old Neighbourhood Inn in Stroud has banned under-21s from entering due to recent behaviour. (Google)

A pub in Gloucestershire has placed a ban on all under-21s after they constantly flouted COVID rules, abused staff and took advantage of their hospitality.

The landlord of the Old Neighbourhood in Stroud told Yahoo News UK “abusive and entitled” youngsters had repeatedly ignored government regulations and became abusive to staff after being asked to follow them since they'd reopened.

Jonathan Armstrong said that younger customers have been flouting social distancing rules, swapping tables and shouting foul language that has upset neighbours and his staff.

People sit at outside tables to eat and drink at re-opened bars and restaurants, in the street in the Soho area of London, on April 16, 2021 following step two of the government's roadmap out of England's third national lockdown. - Britons on Apri l12 toasted a significant easing of coronavirus restrictions, with early morning pints -- and much-needed haircuts -- as the country took a tentative step towards the resumption of normal life. Businesses including non-essential retail, gyms, salons and outdoor hospitality were all able to open for the first time in months in the second step of the government's roadmap out of lockdown. (Photo by Niklas HALLE'N / AFP) (Photo by NIKLAS HALLE'N/AFP via Getty Images)
People sit at outside tables to eat and drink at re-opened bars and restaurants, in the street in Soho, London. (Getty)

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As a result, Armstrong said he had to employ a doorman to help keep order at the establishment and has had to call the police three times when youngsters refused to leave the premises after being barred by staff.

He said the worst was their sense of entitlement, saying they often openly brought their own alcohol onto the premises and did not think it was a problem.

Armstrong said: "We've struggled over the last year to survive to have someone bring their own alcohol onto our premises is just a kick in the teeth."

He said his pub can seat 140 people outdoors and estimated by the end of the night 95% of his customers were young people.

Armstrong said since reopening they had had "bus loads" of young people arriving which has scared off their regular customers.

Watch: COVID-19: Nearly half of adults have been out for a drink or meal since lockdowns eased - survey

He said the pub has not had problems with youngsters in the past but they've never experienced anything like "the total unruly uncontrollable behaviour" of the past few weeks.

Armstrong also suggested that many of the youngsters had not been to a pub before lockdown and had “come of age” over the past 12 months and no-one had taught them how to behave.

He said: "Maybe we're being naive as we're stuck out in the country but it's just something we're not used to."

He added: "It's the sense of entitlement I hate, I'd ask a couple of them to sit down and follow the rules and they'd say 'well stop picking on us because we're spending money with you' and I say 'spending money doesn't give you the right to break the rules' and they're not our rules and that's the worst thing.

"We're in the hospitality trade I hate being inhospitable, but it's just getting out of hand."

Armstrong expects to take a financial hit from the new rule and described it as a difficult decision because their pub has struggled to survive lockdown.

He also said he hated "painting people with the same brush" and knows there are some young people who were happy to follow the rules.

He said he will review the rule on 17 May when the rest of the pubs reopen so "these rowdy customers can go somewhere else so we can have our normal well behaved customers back."

Armstrong said he expected to get some backlash from the new rule but said the community had been very supportive.

He also said he knew of pubs up and down the country struggling with the same issue with several had implementing rules similar to his.

COVID restrictions are set to ease further on 17 May, when up to six people will be allowed to meet indoors – allowing more pubs to open.

Watch: How England will leave lockdown

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