York & North Yorkshire

Samuel Smiths brewery 'bans' bikers from Rotherham pub

Royal Oak, Ulley, near Rotherham
Image caption Bikers have said they are no longer allowed to drink in the Royal Oak

Motorcyclists have claimed they have been banned from a pub chain which recently barred swearing.

Biker Mark Smith said he was told he would no longer be served at The Royal Oak at Ulley, near Rotherham.

The pub is owned by Samuel Smiths brewery, based at Tadcaster in North Yorkshire, who have not responded to a BBC request for comment.

Solicitor Euan Lawrence said it was not against the law for the brewery to ban a group of bikers from its pubs.

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The independent brewery, which has around 200 pubs, recently banned people from swearing on its premises.

Mr Smith said the new ban emerged when he visited his local pub.

"Before I even got to the car park a guy greeted me and said 'we're not allowed in, bikers are barred'.

Image caption Mark Smith said he was turned away from his local because he was a biker
Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The Royal Oak at Ulley is owned by Samuel Smiths brewery

"I parked up and I am getting my gear off and a staff member came out to greet me and said 'I can't serve you, we've barred bikes'."

Mr Smith said the staff member told him the decision came from the brewery and no reason to bar him and other bikers was given.

Euan Lawrence, from Black's Solicitors in Leeds, said bikers were not a "protected group" under the Equality Act.

"Whilst many people would say 'well in the plain English meaning of the word discrimination then yes it is discrimination'.

"But for the purposes of the law and whether or not there is a remedy in respect of that discrimination - the short answer is there is not."

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