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Pub landlord charging punters £30 if they don’t show up – with drinkers divided

A fuming pub landlord has started charging customers £30 if they don’t turn up after getting fed up of punters cancelling.

Barney Reynolds, who runs the Swan Inn in Hanley Swan, Worcestershire, has started asking for card details when people reserve a table.

If anyone cancels within 24 hours, £20 will be taken for lunch reservations and £30 for dinner.

The pub, which charges around £100 for a three-course meal, prompted a mixed response from boozers.

Writing on Facebook, Andy Dixon said: "I have sympathy with pubs but come on, give the punters some flexibility.

"You might book a table and then get ill or someone in your party, like an elderly relative, falls ill on the day of the meal.

However, Swan Inn regular Denise Archer said: "I don't see what the problem is.

"You book a table and if you don't show up then you have to pay for the staff wages that night. It's only fair.

"Pubs need all the help they can get at the moment and the last thing they need are selfish people not turning up or giving enough notice."

Mr Reynolds defended the decision and said the no-show issue was “becoming worse”.

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He explained: “We were one of the very few that you could order, book or buy in advance where either your card details or a deposit aren't required.

"Here at The Swan, we have been desperately trying to avoid having to take card details at the time of booking for the last four years.

"Sadly, we can no longer ignore it. As a hospitality business it's our job to be welcoming and this goes against all that we are.

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"No money will be taken and we have partnered with Stripe, one of the world's largest and most secure payment platforms in the world.

"For those who then cancel with less than 24 hours notice, a charge of £20 at lunch and £30 at dinner will then be made to their card automatically.

"This is a big decision for us as a family-owned small independent pub, but one we have thought carefully about."

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