Pensioner barred from Petts Wood Wetherspoon pub for complaining about customer service 'humiliated'

George Ralph was barred after he complained about the customer service at the Sovereign of the Seas, Petts Wood

George Ralph was barred after he complained about the customer service at the Sovereign of the Seas, Petts Wood

First published in News
Last updated
News Shopper: Photograph of the Author by , deputy news editor

A 72-YEAR-OLD man claims he was "humiliated" after being barred from a Wetherspoon pub in Petts Wood for complaining about customer service.

George Ralph dropped in to the Sovereign of the Seas pub, Queensway, for a pint at around 2pm.

He said: "I was standing at the bar with his guy who was fuming at being unable to get service.

"We waited for ten more minutes until the manager came out of the kitchen, and we complained to him about the delay.

"I said 'I have been waiting here for ten minutes and this gentleman has been waiting for even longer'.

"He reacted with hostility, saying 'you should be patient', saying I was threatening him, which was untrue, and I should go elsewhere.

"I felt humiliated.

"When I went back on Thursday he told me to leave. He told me to apologise to the girls, so I said 'I'm sorry I complained about the poor service', which didn't go down very well."

News Shopper:

Nearly every afternoon for the past five years Mr Ralph has enjoyed an afternoon drink and read a paper at the Sovereign of the Seas.

He visits the pub as he travels from Petts Wood to his home in Hawthorne Road, Bickley, as the R7 bus he gets runs every hour.

The former architect said: "I get the bus down, go to the shops, then I can have a pint and read the paper while I wait for my bus. It's better than waiting at the bus stop.

"I think they really have to do something about the service.

"In 2001 I went to a Wetherspoon pub where a retired gentleman ordered four pints of beer on a tray to avoid the difficulty in getting service at the bar.

"In all these years nothing has changed.

"I can't understand what has happened. Maybe if I had been smoking pot or something I would understand it."

A spokesman for Wetherspoon said: "The gentleman was asked to leave for being abusive and threatening to staff.

"He is not welcome back into the pub.

"We back our manager 100 per cent in his decision."

Comments (16)

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9:44am Mon 24 Feb 14

madras says...

Do yourself a favour, go to the Daylight - much more pleasant!
Do yourself a favour, go to the Daylight - much more pleasant! madras
  • Score: 35

9:47am Mon 24 Feb 14

goldenbroomboy says...

Sod'em George, find a better place to drink. IMHO Wetherspoons pubs are all crap anyway, now it will be your money as well as mine that goes into somebody else's till.
Sod'em George, find a better place to drink. IMHO Wetherspoons pubs are all crap anyway, now it will be your money as well as mine that goes into somebody else's till. goldenbroomboy
  • Score: 40

10:52am Mon 24 Feb 14

cookster says...

Shame we can't hear both sides of the story. Pensioner (on crutches) or not, if he started swearing at the female bar staff then he's got what he deserved.

Of course, I'm sure this wasn't the case and he didn't even raise his voice. Oh no.
Shame we can't hear both sides of the story. Pensioner (on crutches) or not, if he started swearing at the female bar staff then he's got what he deserved. Of course, I'm sure this wasn't the case and he didn't even raise his voice. Oh no. cookster
  • Score: -4

1:38pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Spurious1974 says...

Yet another reason to stop using Wetherspoon pubs........ that and the fact that most of the Wetherspoon pubs are staffed and managed by individuals too far down the evolutionary chain to work in McDonalds, hence their working at Wetherspoon.......
Yet another reason to stop using Wetherspoon pubs........ that and the fact that most of the Wetherspoon pubs are staffed and managed by individuals too far down the evolutionary chain to work in McDonalds, hence their working at Wetherspoon....... Spurious1974
  • Score: 22

8:09pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Gypo.Joe says...

George looks like Albert Steptoe with sunglasses on.
George looks like Albert Steptoe with sunglasses on. Gypo.Joe
  • Score: -23

11:53pm Mon 24 Feb 14

LouiseReg says...

I got barred from the one in bromley, some girl was seeing my boyfriend, went in there one day , she came up to me and said I owe her an apology, she started it in the pub, I said that I have been barred from better places
I got barred from the one in bromley, some girl was seeing my boyfriend, went in there one day , she came up to me and said I owe her an apology, she started it in the pub, I said that I have been barred from better places LouiseReg
  • Score: 6

10:08am Tue 25 Feb 14

white rabbit9 says...

LouiseReg wrote:
I got barred from the one in bromley, some girl was seeing my boyfriend, went in there one day , she came up to me and said I owe her an apology, she started it in the pub, I said that I have been barred from better places
Sounds like a jeremy kyle issue.
[quote][p][bold]LouiseReg[/bold] wrote: I got barred from the one in bromley, some girl was seeing my boyfriend, went in there one day , she came up to me and said I owe her an apology, she started it in the pub, I said that I have been barred from better places[/p][/quote]Sounds like a jeremy kyle issue. white rabbit9
  • Score: 15

12:49pm Tue 25 Feb 14

PurpleMan says...

I don't believe this poor gentleman was hostile or abusive. i can understand being a bit frustrated with the lack of service, but I'm sure everyone has or will experience that. Shame on Whetherspoon for losing a loyal customer!!
I don't believe this poor gentleman was hostile or abusive. i can understand being a bit frustrated with the lack of service, but I'm sure everyone has or will experience that. Shame on Whetherspoon for losing a loyal customer!! PurpleMan
  • Score: 8

3:33pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Anonymous174 says...

I worked in the Sov for about a month and I could honestly say it was a complete shambles. Firstly, I applied to be part of the bar staff, but for some reason, paperwork was messed up and I was put in the kitchen instead (with no previous experience of working in a kitchen before). Secondly, after a week and minimal training, I was put in charge of the kitchen of myself (18 years old at the time and a 16 year old) when I had my shifts.
On my first day of working in the kitchen, I had to clean out the deep fat fryers without any gloves (only kitchen roll). I was also appalled to see the assistant manager put a mushroom, that had been dropped in a cold cup of coffee, put on someone's plate and sent out for some poor man/woman to eat.
The only reason I stayed around for a month was because I was in desperate need of money in order to fund train tickets to London as I was in search of a proper, full-time job.
The manager didn't seem to care about what happened in the pub, and was more focused on flirting with the bar maids he had employed. I refuse to ever step foot in that pub again; it was one of the worst experiences I have ever had in my life.
I can't comment on how the bar is run, but on the basis of how the kitchen was run, this pub should be investigated.
I worked in the Sov for about a month and I could honestly say it was a complete shambles. Firstly, I applied to be part of the bar staff, but for some reason, paperwork was messed up and I was put in the kitchen instead (with no previous experience of working in a kitchen before). Secondly, after a week and minimal training, I was put in charge of the kitchen of myself (18 years old at the time and a 16 year old) when I had my shifts. On my first day of working in the kitchen, I had to clean out the deep fat fryers without any gloves (only kitchen roll). I was also appalled to see the assistant manager put a mushroom, that had been dropped in a cold cup of coffee, put on someone's plate and sent out for some poor man/woman to eat. The only reason I stayed around for a month was because I was in desperate need of money in order to fund train tickets to London as I was in search of a proper, full-time job. The manager didn't seem to care about what happened in the pub, and was more focused on flirting with the bar maids he had employed. I refuse to ever step foot in that pub again; it was one of the worst experiences I have ever had in my life. I can't comment on how the bar is run, but on the basis of how the kitchen was run, this pub should be investigated. Anonymous174
  • Score: 18

4:41pm Tue 25 Feb 14

molsey says...

I used to drink regularly in the Sovereign until a couple of months a go, I am a Bitter/Ale drinker.
I came in, walked up to the bar looking along the pumps for Doombar as they had been stocking it now and again. Not being able to see any Doombar I said to the manager "No Doombar" he said "No, have something else" gesturing along the other bitters. I perused the others but none took my fancy and I was silent and contemplating for a few moments, then the manager said "They all taste the same to me anyway" I looked at him and said "Are you serious" he said "Yeh" I said I'll give it a miss today and turned to walk out, as I was doing so the manager shouted after me "Go over the Daylight, they've got it". I've never been back since.
I used to drink regularly in the Sovereign until a couple of months a go, I am a Bitter/Ale drinker. I came in, walked up to the bar looking along the pumps for Doombar as they had been stocking it now and again. Not being able to see any Doombar I said to the manager "No Doombar" he said "No, have something else" gesturing along the other bitters. I perused the others but none took my fancy and I was silent and contemplating for a few moments, then the manager said "They all taste the same to me anyway" I looked at him and said "Are you serious" he said "Yeh" I said I'll give it a miss today and turned to walk out, as I was doing so the manager shouted after me "Go over the Daylight, they've got it". I've never been back since. molsey
  • Score: 14

8:58pm Wed 26 Feb 14

white rabbit9 says...

"Go over the Daylight, they've got it" Seems they got it right.
"Go over the Daylight, they've got it" Seems they got it right. white rabbit9
  • Score: 9

3:07am Thu 27 Feb 14

ISaidThis says...

Everyone should be barred from at least one Wetherspoon's pub in their life or they're not really trying. When they first started out, they were decent little boozers, now they're awful places that smell of other people's bodily fluids and dispense rubbish beer. Best avoided.
Everyone should be barred from at least one Wetherspoon's pub in their life or they're not really trying. When they first started out, they were decent little boozers, now they're awful places that smell of other people's bodily fluids and dispense rubbish beer. Best avoided. ISaidThis
  • Score: 7

9:20am Thu 27 Feb 14

neighbour says...

Ah - Weatherspoon's. God bless all those who fail in them, where good manners is extinct and the customer's always wrong.
Ah - Weatherspoon's. God bless all those who fail in them, where good manners is extinct and the customer's always wrong. neighbour
  • Score: 9

2:57pm Fri 28 Feb 14

LG_254 says...

Spurious1974 wrote:
Yet another reason to stop using Wetherspoon pubs........ that and the fact that most of the Wetherspoon pubs are staffed and managed by individuals too far down the evolutionary chain to work in McDonalds, hence their working at Wetherspoon.......
Clearly not as far down as others with appalling grammar...
[quote][p][bold]Spurious1974[/bold] wrote: Yet another reason to stop using Wetherspoon pubs........ that and the fact that most of the Wetherspoon pubs are staffed and managed by individuals too far down the evolutionary chain to work in McDonalds, hence their working at Wetherspoon.......[/p][/quote]Clearly not as far down as others with appalling grammar... LG_254
  • Score: -23

6:10pm Fri 28 Feb 14

Not-a-hamster says...

Sounds familiar.

The Sov barred my mate (not drinking because he was driving) for only drinking lemonade. Manager was very rude about it and strangely we've not been back since.
Sounds familiar. The Sov barred my mate (not drinking because he was driving) for only drinking lemonade. Manager was very rude about it and strangely we've not been back since. Not-a-hamster
  • Score: 13

10:37am Sun 2 Mar 14

Rich41 says...

The daylight is a much better pub have your pint in there george
The daylight is a much better pub have your pint in there george Rich41
  • Score: 4

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