Pub loses licence after serving pints to regulars posing as builders

Pub loses its licence after it was caught serving pints during lockdown to regulars posing as bogus builders pretending to carry out repairs

  • Y-Bodunig pub in Wales has lost its licence after serving drinks during lockdown
  • In one incident, police caught regulars trying to pose as bogus repairmen
  • Licensing committee told manager Derek Coulton put people at risk
  • Two new managers appealing to be allowed to reopen the pub after lockdown 

A pub in Wales has lost its licence after being found to have served regulars posing as bogus builders carrying out fake repairs during lockdown.

Police spotted the fake tradesmen entering the Y-Bodunig in the North Wales village of Dyserth while carrying out spot-checks at the pub.

One regular stood on a ladder pretending to work as a barman spoke to an officer – and then continued drinking as the officer left.

And the landlord’s son was seen carrying a circular saw inside and sprinkling sawdust on the bar to make it appear that work was going on.

The Y-Bodunig pub (pictured) in the North Wales village of Dyserth has lost its licence after being found to have served regulars posing as bogus builders carrying out fake repairs during lockdown

Police said that during a ‘string of incidents’, CCTV footage recorded people entering the pub through a back door and hiding from a community support officer.

After the pub’s managers tried to ‘hoodwink’ the police officers, the establishment’s licence was revoked.

The bogus repairmen were revealed after the pub’s original owner’s submitted an application for a licence to reopen.

In March 2020 police noticed lights on in the pub and found at least 15 people inside, according to a report to licensing chiefs.

Following the discovery, the pub’s management was told it had to close – only for officers to receive additional reports in the following weeks of people coming and going from the pub. 

The regulars posing as bogus repairmen were among those found to have been visiting the pub. 

Speaking about the incidents at the pub, North Wales Police solicitor Gareth Preston told the council’s licensing committee that then-manager Derek Coulton put people at risk of virus transmission.

Mr Preston described Mr Coulton as having been ‘dishonest, obstructive and indeed devious in his attempts to continue licensed activity during the lockdown’.

Police said that during a ‘string of incidents’, CCTV footage recorded people entering the pub through a back door and hiding from a community support officer

A report to Denbighshire licensing chiefs stated that North Wales Police had a lack of confidence in the pub’s management to run it responsibly and that Derek Coulton had broken Covid-19 regulations despite ‘several’ warnings.

Mr Coulton was forced to close the pub, but two new managers are appealing in the hope they can reopen when current lockdown restrictions are lifted.

A council spokesman said: ‘The applicants are aware of the reasons for the former licence being revoked and have consulted with North Wales Police and taken advice regarding their operating schedule.’

The applicants for the new licence have outlined their intention to train staff on the Challenge 25 policy, to provide effective CCTV and to have a zero tolerance regarding drugs on the premises. 

A decision on whether the pub will be allowed to reopen is due next month.

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