Apologies after Lewes pub says ‘vegans not welcome’

The poster on the pub door
The poster on the pub door

Harvey’s Brewery has issued an apology after a poster on a Lewes pub door caused a furious local reaction.

The sign at The Dorset was put up on Boxing Day – when the Southdown and Eridge Hunt traditionally visits the town.

It read: “Due to the hunt today, we regret to inform you we will not be welcoming Saboteurs or Vegans in to the premises. Kind regards, The Management.”

Harvey’s said today (Thursday, December 27): “Following our return from the Christmas break, we have been made aware of an incident involving the stewardship of The Dorset pub, Lewes, who placed an inappropriate and divisive pub sign outside the pub on Boxing Day.

“Harvey’s do not concur with the sentiment of this sign in any way, and are appalled at the inconsiderate actions of the individual in question.

“Harvey’s do not directly manage The Dorset, it is a tenanted house, and having been in contact with the tenants they have informed us that their employee has been suspended pending an ongoing investigation.

“Harvey’s are fully committed to the inclusivity of all guests. We would like to assure customers that our Managed Houses are happy to cater for all dietary requirements, and we encourage our tenanted estate to do the same.

“We greatly regret the misperceptions created by this notice and would like to reassure current and future patrons that all are welcome in our establishments, and the season of goodwill to all is keenly observed by us at Harvey’s.

“We are looking to respond to the many enquiries we have received in due course, and hope that our customers will continue their support in light of the many negative reviews we have now received online due to this incident.”

The licncees of The Dorset, the South East Pub Co Ltd, also issued a statement. It read: “Following the comments generated by today’s inaccurate, insensitive and inappropriate poster, the company would like to issue a formal apology for any confusion, offence or upset it may have caused.

“The poster, information it contained and the views expressed by staff since are not representative of the views or opinions of the company or brewery.

“We do not affiliate with any organisations or discriminate against any individuals or groups.

“The staff involved will be disciplined in accordance with our policies and procedures and this will not happen again.

“Please refrain from further personal contact with, or threats to our staff and address any complaints or comments directly to our senior management team at thedorsetlewes@outlook.com”