UK pub chain Samuel Smith’s bans mobile phones
UK pub chain Samuel Smith’s has banned mobile phone, iPads and laptops from its pubs in an effort to reignite the art of conversation.
As reported by the Manchester Evening News, a memo was sent out to managers and put on display at a pub in Rochdale which stated that the brewery’s policy “is not to allow customers mobile phones, laptops or similar inside our pubs”.
It states: “If a customer receives a call then he or she should go outside to take it in the same way as it is required with smoking. Whether outside or inside, tablets and iPads must be prohibited.
“Customers must not be allowed to receive transmitted pictures of sport or download music apps on the brewery’s premises either inside or outside.
“The brewery’s policy is that our pubs are for social conversation person to person.”
How the pub will enforce the ban has not been elaborated on.
The pub chain has also banned televisions and music in the past in order to maintain a “traditional, uncompromisingly Victorian aesthetic”.
It has also banned swearing in April 2017, with signs in pubs telling customers: “We wish to inform all of our customers that we have introduced a zero tolerance policy against swearing in all of our pubs. Please kindly respect this policy”.
The Samuel Smith pub chain operated some 300 pubs up and down the country, and is owned by Humphrey Smith, who is aged in his 70s.
Last year, another pub made headlines after it made £20,000 in fines after banning mobile phones. Landlord Mark Robson implemented a mobile phone ban when he opened the Just Reproach pub in December 2011, putting up a sign which read: “Your babbling disregard for others is more than a little annoying.”
If anyone’s phone rings or beeps, he fines them £1, with the money made donated to charity.
Elsewhere the Gin Tub in Hove installed a Faraday Cage in its ceiling to disrupt mobile phone signals, which means that customers have to go outside if they wish to make a call or send a text, as well as check social media.