Wales labour leader Mark Drakeford is BARRED from more than 100 pubs for ‘anti-social behaviour’ after banning bars and restaurants from serving alcohol
- West Conwy Pubwatch shares open letter saying he faces arrest if he shows up
- Letter said landlords had legal duty to prevent ‘antisocial behaviour’ on premises
- It comes as Mark Drakeford announced rules banning pubs from selling alcohol
Wales’s Labour leader Mark Drakeford has been banned for ‘anti-social behaviour’ from more than 100 pubs – after announcing the country’s ‘draconian’ alcohol ban.
Furious landlords ruled the First Minister is barred from their premises for at least 18 months.
In a letter the West Conwy Pubwatch group said Mr Drakeford, 66, was being banned because of his ‘anti-social behaviour’ and told him he faced arrest if he turned up.
It comes after the Labour leader announced new rules on the hospitality industry on Monday – banning pubs and restaurants from selling alcohol from 6pm on Friday.
The move prompted bosses to issue a rallying cry and urge the Welsh government to provide ‘proof’ that their customers are more likely to catch Covid-19 in their establishments.
The Welsh leader Mark Drakeford has been barred from more than 100 pubs in Wales after the latest announcement regarding Covid restrictions as landlords call for evidence it will help
In the latest move against the restrictions, an open letter from the West Conwy Pubwatch group said: ‘All licensees have a legal duty under the Licensing Act of 2003 to ensure that disorderly, argumentative, violent behaviour and antisocial behaviour does not occur on or around their premises and to prevent the occurrence of criminal offences.
‘As a result of your behaviour on November 30th 2020 at the Senedd Cymru your actions class as antisocial behaviour for the damage caused to our members’ premises.
‘The licensees of the West Conwy Pubwatch have jointly decided that in order to discharge their duty as referred to above they are exercising their right not to allow you entry to their premises.
‘Should you attempt to ignore this notice and enter any of the licensed premises listed on our website the assistance of police will be sought, if necessary to eject you from the premises and an extra six months will be added to your ban.
‘This ban is effective from the date of this letter and will remain in force until the 30th of May 2022 or until your review which will be at our meeting in the first week of August 2021.
‘If your review is successful we will be in touch to inform you.’
It told Mr Drakeford he could appeal the decision on the group’s website.
Phillip Ashe, who runs two pubs in Rhos on Sea and Penmaenmawr, is vice-chairman of the West Conwy Pubwatch group and said pubs were being put at risk by the decision.
He said: ‘I know about seven or eight premises that will not be here. They rely on Christmas to get through January and February.
Wales Labour leader Mark Drakeford announced new rules on the hospitality industry on Monday – banning pubs and restaurants from selling alcohol from 6pm on Friday
‘Premises will not open by March because without the December trade they will have nothing to fall back on in January and February.
‘We are going to have a lot of people out of work.’
He said the new rules saying pubs could open but not sell alcohol amounted to ‘like opening a butchers and asking them not to sell meat.’
Mr Ashe added: ‘If he wasn’t a politician and he had done as much damage to our premises as he has, then we would have done the same thing, so it’s not a publicity stunt.
‘I don’t think he would be coming up in the next 18 months anyway.’
The Welsh Government declined to comment.
Mr Drakeford previously said the measures were needed to drive infection rates down ahead of Christmas.
CAMRA National Chairman Nik Antona said: ‘Restrictions that force hundreds of pubs to close and devastate trade for those able to remain open to serve meals could be the final straw for Welsh pubs and the breweries that supply them.
‘There is simply no evidence that a draconian alcohol ban will stop the spread of Covid-19.
‘What is clear is that our pub culture is being used as a convenient scapegoat for the spread of the pandemic.’