Samuel Smith's Pubs Have Banned Customers From Using Mobile Phones

Bosses at Samuel Smith's pubs have announced they have banned punters from using their mobile phones, tablets, or laptops.

The brewery's owner Humphrey Smith sent a letter to the managers of his 200 boozers informing them they were to stop customers from using devices inside their establishments.

Dated 25 March, the memo also said customers have been specially banned from downloading music apps.

It read: "The brewery's policy is to not allow customers from using mobile phones, laptops or similar in pubs. If the customer receives a call, then he or she should go outside to take it in the same way as 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 chain has banned customers from using their phones inside their pubs. Credit: Ian S (Creative Commons)
The chain has banned customers from using their phones inside their pubs. Credit: Ian S (Creative Commons)

This isn't the first time the chain's owner has put his foot down when it comes to maintaining a certain level of decorum.

In the past they have banned music being played, while there are no televisions in any of their taverns, and there is a strict no swearing policy.

According to the brewery, the uncompromising stance ensured they maintain their 'traditional, uncompromisingly Victorian aesthetic'.

The new rule, which came into effect yesterday (28 March), will no doubt divide opinion, with some rejoicing in the fact that they will no longer have to sit across from their slack-jawed mate scrolling for the entirety of the time it takes to finish their drink without uttering a syllable.

Meanwhile, others will be horrified at the prospect of actually having to talk to their pal or significant other.

Customers are allowed to take calls outside the pubs. Credit: PA
Customers are allowed to take calls outside the pubs. Credit: PA

But Samuel Smith's has company when it comes to pubs attempting to curb the impact of modern technology on their establishments. Ten years ago staff at the Court Inn in Durham banned drinkers from using mobile phones as a way of trying to stamp out antisocial behavior.

And just three years ago, in 2016, regulars at The Gin Tub in Brighton were told to stop using their phones, and the Beefeater chain introduced 'no phone zones' in their restaurants on Mother's Day.

Earlier this year, bosses at Frankie and Benny's introduced a total ban on mobiles, making it the first family restaurant in the UK to do so.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Dominic Smithers

After graduating from Leeds University with a degree in French and History, Dom went onto gain an NCTJ journalism qualification. Since then he has worked as a reporter at the Manchester Evening News and the Macclesfield Express, covering breaking news, court, sports, and politics.

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