If you use your phone in certain York pubs be careful – you might be barred!

Memos have been sent to city publicans detailing the latest eccentric policy introduced by the Samuel Smith Brewery in Tadcaster, which owns 300 pubs.

The memo has been leaked to YorkMix. Dated 25 March it is from 73-year-old brewery owner Humphrey Smith to all pub managers, and headlined Mobile Phones and other Transmission Equipment.


It makes clear that modern technology is not welcome:

  • The brewery’s policy is not to allow mobile phones, laptops or similar inside our pubs.

    If a 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 brewery’s policy is that our pubs are for social conversation person to person.

Eccentric policies

The memo from Samuel Smith’s owner to its pub managers

Among the pubs in York owned by Sam Smith’s are the York Arms on High Petergate, The Burns Hotel on Market Street, the King’s Arms by the river and the Wellington Inn on Alma Terrace.

The mobile phone ban is not the only unusual policy by the eccentric family firm.


Its pubs are not allowed to play music or have televisions, while there is also a zero tolerance on swearing.

And the brewery often closes pubs without notice. In April 2017 the Wellington was abruptly closed, before reopening with new tenants.

Meanwhile the Brigadier Gerard on Monkgate was shut a year ago, with rocks barricading the car park.

The pub is now looking for new managers.

Typically the brewery is refusing to comment on the its anti-technology policy.

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