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« Peer pressure: what Lord Laird thinks about smokers | Main | The sensational Mr B »

Jolly evening at the Jolly Brewer

Went to the Jolly Brewer in Lincoln on Saturday. Landlady Emma Chapman (left), a supporter of the Save Our Pubs & Clubs campaign, dedicated day two of the pub's annual music festival to "all the smokers forced to stand outside as a result of the smoking ban". I was joined by Dan Donovan who took these photographs and more. Click HERE.

The Jolly Brewer has an impressive outdoor area - tables, large canopy, substantial stage, excellent sound system. True, it was a bit cold (in August!) but inside and out the pub has a warm heart (and a good selection of beer and cider - I was particularly drawn to a cider called Thatchers). Emma told me that 60-70 per cent of her customers are regulars and if I lived in Lincoln I'd be one of them.

Thanks too to singer songwriter Bob Cairns (in the woolly hat, below). It was he who compered Saturday's event which was billed as "Bob's Smokin' Gig" and he maintained the theme by puffing all night on a succession of fags!

Below: Smokin' Bob and, below him, Markus Coulson of The Treehouse

Reader Comments (25)

I’m sure that the occasion was really enjoyable. I looked at the pictures of the event and can see that those people in the pictures were enjoying themselves. But....I did not see any pictures of the crowds of people attending the event. There must, surely, have been crowds of people attending.
Or was it just like our local pub when a live band is playing? Were there only 20 or so people in attendance? There is nothing in the text or in the pictures to indicate otherwise.
The probability is that hardly anyone attended. It was a publicity stunt.

The reality is that Clegg and co will not change the smoking ban, unless there is civil unrest. By that, I do not mean marching about in the streets. What I mean is a concerted effort to reveal the ban as the CON TRICK that it is.

It is unfortunately true that publicans are terrified. Of what are they terrified?

One might reasonable ask the question: Did Emma Chapman allow smoking in her pub on the occasion of this event? Neither the text nor the pictures indicate that this was so, and therefore it can be concluded that it was not so. Emma Chapman did not allow smoking in her pub and therefore was complicit in the CON TRICK. Why?

It seems to me to be true that if publicans had said, in the first place, when this Act was passed, that, “Up with this we will not put!”, then the whole thing would have collapsed in a heap immediately, but they didn’t. They were cowards. As a result, we have to go through this long, drawn out process of trying to convince the powers-that-be that tobacco smoke is harmless.

I’m sorry, but I personally will not risk myself in order to rescue publicans. If publicans sort themselves out, and fight for their rights, I will take risks, but not otherwise.

It is up to publicans to defy the CON TRICK. Emma Chapman should have put her telescope to her blind eye and said, “I cannot see anyone smoking”.

The defiance needs only to be organised once, provided that it is nationwide (not necessarily everywhere).

Conspiracy? Well, yes. But is conspiracy to defy a bad law a crime? If that were true, then we would all be obliged to conform to any law, regardless of how unjust it may be, merely because the powers-that-be say so.

If publicans got together and agreed to defy this unjust law, then I would help them. But I will not help them if they will not help themselves.

August 30, 2010 at 3:08 | Unregistered CommenterJunican

Who ate all the pies?

God!'ve put some weight on!

No wonder there's nobody else around.

August 30, 2010 at 8:44 | Unregistered CommenterDavidR

Well put Junican. This stunt will have achieved absolutely nothing, other than show how the law is being adhered to. No wonder the antis have moved on to banning smoking in cars, homes and open public spaces.

All of these bans are based (or at least marketed) on one premise - the harmful affects of SHS. If this myth is allowed to perpetuate, the antis have won. Any argument for separate smoking facilities in pubs etc should NOT kowtow to SHS propaganda. Where is the dedicated passive smoking topic on this site (not listed in categories) - the very thing that has prompted the Save our Pubs & Clubs campaign? If Forest are seen to accept that SHS is dangerous you might as well throw in the towel now. Not that it would really make much difference - so long as Forest is associated with tobacco company funding it has little credibility.

August 30, 2010 at 10:14 | Unregistered Commenterdavidb

Next Saturday (4th Sep) some of us will gather to pay tribute to a landlord and landlady who have stood up steadfast and valiant in the fight for freedom. They stuck their necks out, they stood up to be counted, they put their investment on the line. They stood square with their words, they gave it their best shot. Had 100 others done what they did ,we would'nt be here still rambling on about the ban.. Forget who you belong to,forget who you have fallen out with,forget with whom you differ,put aside past animosities,lay down for one day the varying road maps.

Just for once ,show the zealots ,we have one aim,one target,one hope. See you there at 2pm.

BTW This is not aligned to any one organisation. ALL ARE WELCOME



August 30, 2010 at 11:42 | Unregistered CommenterBack Streets

I agree. I wish I could have made the event but for being on deadline with my MA dissertation and work all next week. If I had known you were there, Simon, I would have popped in to at least say hello. Yes, Emma is a great.

August 30, 2010 at 13:08 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Oh - and I should have said that warm heart makes the Jolly Brewer the best pub in Lincoln!

August 30, 2010 at 13:21 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Junican, btw, the event is heaving every year. It certainly is no stunt. Emma holds regular music events. This one has always been held over the bank holiday weekend. Emma changed the name after July 2007 as a way of saying thanks to smokers who stuck with the pub. I crashed it last year with F2C, Forest Literature, and even UKIP because Emma wanted to know more about the pro-choice movement. That didn't go down too well because of Emma having to be non-political.

Yes, we should celebrate all of those pub landlords, including those in Drighlington, who are fighting our cause but we should not diminish any of their efforts. What is it about this "movement"? We are our own worst enemies. Unless we can get on, what hope of the other side ever listening to our views?

August 30, 2010 at 13:29 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

I fully agree with Junican. Lets face it, pub landlords have no bottle for a fight, they are trying desperatley to survive now. The public have shown what they are......

August 30, 2010 at 14:01 | Unregistered CommenterPeter James

When it comes to openly, publically, defy the ban the authortites will really come down on you hard i.e. Nick Hogan and Dave West. Also open definance looks like we a bunch of yobs who cannot be trusted with a point of view or be taken seriously. This approach just won't work here, but does in the Netherlands and soon will in Bavaria. Best to find a friendly landlord/lady and be discrete.

However, while I appreciate the general public either have a jaundiced view of politicians and politics, the pro choice movement is not party political per se apart from UKIP of course. Lincoln's indifference, while representative of many people, is very disappointing. It is all too easy to sit around moaning and another thing to do something about it.

The pro choice movement is evolving and we learn as we go. So profiles have to be discrete at public events unless advised that the mood is such. If you go to an event in London you expect a speech and a soap box.

Finally I agree with Patsy about not bickering among ourselves and we must be united.

August 30, 2010 at 14:07 | Unregistered CommenterDave Atherton

I would also add that Emma and other publicans in Lincoln are battling on all fronts. Some of our pubs have been closed down by police who have deliberately sent in older looking under age people who have bought alcoholic drinks on very busy nights, from inexperienced staff. Add to that the police zealotry when questioning drunk people accused of getting into trouble. One of the questions they ask is "Did you think the bar person should have served you?" Is this really the kind of question that should be asked of someone like that? Pubs really are the subject of the same witch hunt as smokers - certainly here in Lincoln. Publicans are now expected to ask proof that someone is 25 - when the legal age is 18.

Emma has also been warned that she is a "bad" publican because someone caused trouble in another pub then came to hers for a drink. How was she supposed to know that he caused trouble elsewhere if when he came to her pub he appeared in control of his faculties and was pleasant enough? Do the authorities expect our publicans to be psychic now as well?

Another Lincoln pub landlady did her damn best when the smoking ban came out. Erika Stroem put her life, house and savings into a traditional community pub. She lost everything. Her pub died immediately on July 2, 2007. She tried to diversify in food and sold a plate of chips a night. She gathered hundreds of signatures on a petition from other landlords who felt the same. It was presented to Gillian Merron who chose to ignore it. Since then we have lost many of our cultural pubs. The High Street night life is dead, and this is ultimately what the health zealots wants.

Erika's pub was taken over a by pub co who had the money to gut it, make it into something else, and it is ultimately now a family friendly diner. These places should not be selling alcohol at all where children are present. Pubs used to be for adults.

Pubs are people like Erika and Emma;'s livelihood and their dream. Many are now clinging on with their fingertips. To expect any pub landlord to allow smoking inside in such a climate of authoritarian and healthist hatred is madness. Those who have signed such campaigns as SOPAC demonstrate they are on our side. I still wait to hear of my Conservative MP has.

Dave is also right in what he says about our movement and politics. UKIP is the only party that from the very beginning has been on our side. Shame that some of you disregarded their political help at the time of the election, when we really could have made a noise, as coming from a bunch of nutters.

August 30, 2010 at 14:53 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Pat, no disrespect, but no political party will ever ever overturn the smoking ban. Full Stop!! The reversal of the ban will come in time on its own accord. Notice the lack of UKIP rep Margot ????

August 30, 2010 at 16:19 | Unregistered CommenterPeter James

Out of the ashes the Phoenix rises...........

August 30, 2010 at 16:32 | Unregistered CommenterPeter James

Peter - the UKIP published policy on pubs included bringing back rooms inside pubs for smokers. At their conference last year they voted overwhelmingly for an end to smoke free funding. Why is it so hard to believe and why belittle any efforts anyone makes in favour of the pro-choice cause?

My honest belief was that if smokers had united at the last election, and the Con voters too, that would have reps enough votes to make the Cons, who do fear UKIP sit up and start acting on our behalf and like a proper opposition. Labour's vote had gone because people like me got fed up them. People who voted for them last time to. What hope do we have now with the NuGovt when they know that this issue doesn't matter - not even for smokers. If it did, they could assume, that smokers would have voted for the only party that spoke of putting the balance back - UKIP.

Now we have 5 years of an iliberal NuGovt, a couple of generations going into smoke free pubs, and we have no hope of ever getting this ban amended. For all the talk, I personally don't see anything getting better for us under this sham govt which, under Nick Clegg, has already equated our cause with that of bringing back the death penalty.

August 30, 2010 at 17:20 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

My apologies to Simon, Forest and Emma Chapman if my comments were construed as being critical of them personally. I had not intended them to be so. I did rather word that comment badly. What I was attempting to do was comment in a general way about who were the principle people who should have been fighting against the ban when it first came out. It was unfortunate that I used Emma Chapman's name when I was, in fact, talking generally.

As it happens, I was in a rather bad mood on that evening. I had been to the pub on one of my less frequent visits, and finally managed to have a quiet word with the landlady. No doubt people here remember me mentioning that the 'no smoking' notices outside both of my local pubs had disappeared and not been replaces some weeks, possibly months, ago. I asked her 'just as a matter if interest' how come. She told me 'that word had gone around' that the Local Authority were no longer 'bothered', and that went also for smoking in porches. It really pissed me off to think that officials in the town hall can decide, just like that, to disregard A LAW!!! A LAW which is part of a more general law which would get us sent to jail if we stepped out of line (viz Nick Hogan). Maybe the very bad publicity which was REPORTED IN THE NEWSPAPERS not long ago re a shop-owner having a fag in his own shop doorway and being dragged before the courts has lead them to think that 'the gain is not worth the pain'.

That was the origin of my suggestion that 'Anne should turn a blind eye'. (Again, I must stress that I was thinking about publicans in general rather than Anne Chapman in particular). The enforcers have decided to 'turn a blind eye' - why should publicans not do the same?

Simon is quite right to point out that people have to fight the ban in their own ways - as must we all. To quote a phrase, I mis-spoke!.

August 30, 2010 at 20:55 | Unregistered CommenterJunican

Junican, calm down lad, I often post in the wrath of anger or in my cups, tis perfectly understandable.

Like you I enjoyed a few pints in the beer garden of a local hostelry today, it was great weather, and apart from the insects, a pair of baseball hatted cops clambering over the wall of the garden looking for god knows what with big pointy sticks in their hands, and the rancid smell of scampi inside the pub, the wailing kinder and the utterly surly bar stafff it was quite pleasant.

After 3 pints I left for the serenity of my back garden smoky-drinky table.

I'm glad the place stank of scampi, rather than smell the "indoor - dwelling" horse racing addicted BO of the punters inside.

Perhaps a can of Febreeze kept in one's jacket pocket might be in order when having to venture inside?

August 30, 2010 at 23:33 | Unregistered CommenterJoseph K

"All of these bans are based (or at least marketed) on one premise - the harmful affects of SHS." via davidb

I went to the first F2C AGM. I tried my best to emphasise that the SHS myth was the kernal of all smoking bans. A concerted effort needs to be made on this single issue, which began in Nazi Germany, passive rauchen. This however fell on deaf ears. Our strongest advocate is a non smoker who says the jury is still out on this one, yes Simon, you.

Passive Smoking, Second Hand Smoke, Environmental Tobacco Smoke, call it what you will. Forget your sealed smoking rooms, that will never happen, because it says that they are right.

August 31, 2010 at 1:36 | Unregistered Commentertimbone

Tonight, on the TV, I saw a new anti-smoking advert. This advert shows a woman having a fag at the doorway of her home. Inside the home are a couple of kids. The voice-over states that tobacco smoke is invisible – it gets everywhere. The ad concludes ‘TAKE SEVEN STEPS OUTSIDE’.

Isn’t the escalation in numbers curious?

We started with ZERO level of safety to second hand smoke, then we moved to THREE pints of beer in a session being the ‘recognised’ level at which a person becomes a binge drinker, then we went to FIVE portions of fruit and veg per day, and now to SEVEN steps. (Not necessarily in that order). God only knows how the body/mass index was arrived at.

But that is all beside the point, amusing though it may be. The really important thing is THE BLATANT ASSUMPTION (not in accordance with scientific fact) that there is some possibility of harm to the children inside when the mother is standing on the doorstep.

Is this a further, pre-planed escalation? Well, of course it is. But is it a step too far? I think that it is. In a way, it is worse that the ad which showed a smoker being beaten up. At least in that ad, it was clear that the ‘beating up’ was, shall we say, metaphorical. In this ad, there is an implication of ACTUAL real scientific truth implied.

I will do my bit. I will write to the Health Sec and complain. I might (not sure yet) write to the Science Minister (if there still is one) and complain about the science. I could, of course, write to my MP, but she that Qwerishi person – total waste of time. But it seems to me to be true that Forest have far more clout than I have. Perhaps Forest could highlight the nonsense being perpetrated by the Health Dept?

I’ll try posting a new idea on Your Freedom. You never know, it might get picked up.

August 31, 2010 at 2:13 | Unregistered CommenterJunican


I agree with your points on SHS in that the only reason we have smoking bans is because of the supposed "harm." The problem that we have is lock that the health lobby has on main stream media and how guilable people want to be.

August 31, 2010 at 9:47 | Unregistered CommenterDave Atherton

Nobody is asking the landlords to break any laws,nobody is asking them to march on Westminster,nobody is asking them to take any risks, in fact nobody is asking anybody to do anything except read blogs and stand outside pubs looking like complete prats.

How many .. repeat... how many publicans belong or help or support any campaign HOW MANY?
Is it to tiring to put up a poster,pass round a petition,hand out some literature, attend the occasional meeting,write a letter.........IS IT? Time is ripe to establish once and for all who is who in this fight ?

PS For all the "Law abiders" I'me glad I did'nt live next to you in 1930s Germany

Wet through Guttersnipe.

August 31, 2010 at 11:50 | Unregistered CommenterBack Streets

For anyone who reads french - this is an article from a French language Swiss trade journal for the bar trade in canton Fribourg. Fribourg brought in a smoking ban about a year ago and the headline numbers are... 83% have seen takings fall since the ban, 24% have already sacked people due to lower takings and another 30% think they will have to do the same.

Its the same everywhere...

August 31, 2010 at 13:05 | Unregistered CommenterMark Butcher

Back Streets, you ask "Who is who in this fight?". It's just a personal opinion, but I do think people should use their real names when campaigning. Emma Chapman doesn't hide behind a pseudonym and nor should any serious campaigner.

August 31, 2010 at 13:50 | Registered CommenterSimon Clark

I also don't like this line the campaign seems to be taking for separate sealed smoking rooms. We want separate pubs. Smoking rooms are terrible places.

You can tell Simon is a non-smoker if this is the line he wants to take.

August 31, 2010 at 15:25 | Unregistered CommenterDave

My own view is that we can only get back what we lost bit by bit as they took it off us bit by bit. As much as I wish it wasn't so, I fear it is.

August 31, 2010 at 17:46 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Lets face it pubs are losing millions of pounds, compared to what they would be making if they could accommodate smokers inside. Its the pubcos, breweries and landlords that must take a stand. Its them that need to be woken up to this fact.

All it will take is for the weather to be bad for a few months, for hundreds more pubs to close or to change hands. Smokers tend to avoid their local when the weather is bad as they have to stand outside.
The Smoking Research centre ran by Kerry Fenton in 2009 saw her customer number quadruple, in just five days.

September 1, 2010 at 2:14 | Unregistered CommenterJim

"Its the same everywhere..."

Yes, Mark - and it's the same response from the same politicians.


Sooner or later, something's GOT to give.

WE have given enough.

A Horrible Thought has just struck me:

Suppose (for a moment) that a Milibandish Not-The-New-Labour Labour Party decided that an amendment might not, after all, be SUCH a bad idea, and used that as an opportunity to attack the blinkered intransigence of the Lib/Con Coalition on the issue. Why, there might even be votes in it for Dave-or-Ed.

What would we do then ?

Like I said - a horrible thought.

But in these strange times.............................................

September 3, 2010 at 23:06 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

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