Peterborough pub bans punters from using phones

The Botolph Arms
The Botolph Arms
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A Peterborough pub has told punters to park their phones as they enjoy the perfect pint.

Regulars at The Botolph Arms in Orton now have to head outside if they want to make a call - or even watch sport highlights or listen to music - after brewery Samuel Smith introduced the no phones and tablet policy in their pubs.

Instead, they will have to join people smoking in the beer garden.

While a pub insider said the policy had been popular with many who visit the pub regularly, other regulars said they were unhappy about the decision.

Beryl Vernon, who regularly visits the pub with her family, said customers should be given the choice on whether they use mobiles in the pub - as long as it didn’t cause too much of a disturbance to others.

She said: “I use my mobile to stay in touch with family and friends, look at Facebook plus a bit of Rightmove.

“My small grandson and I play educational games that we have done for years.

“I have seen landlord ask people to stop playing music which I think is correct.”

No-one from the pub or from the brewery was willing to comment on the move, which has been introduced in their pubs across the country.

However, the insider at the pub said the decision had been a popular one.

They said: “I think it is a good thing and the feedback has been largely positive too.

“The whole point of coming to a pub is to socialise face to face with people, rather than over the phone.

“If people want to smoke, they go outside - and if people want to use their mobile phones, they can go outside.”

The pub already has a traditional atmosphere, with no TVs, no music playing, and a ban on swearing inside the pub, and it has a large beer garden for people to use.

Samuel Smith’s introduced the no phones policy this week with a letter informing all managers of the new rules leaked on social media

The letter said: “Customers must not be allowed to receive transmitted pictures of sport or download music apps on the brewery’s premises either inside or outside.”

It adds that the “brewery’s policy is that our pubs are for social conversation person to person”.