Friday, July 15, 2011

The Clowns The Scam The Silliness of it ALL

Fair Pinter keeps pub but has to pay £135k S&NPC debt

Thanks guys. The situation has been like; well, like nothing else I've ever experienced. Boneheadedly stupid really.

You know that one about: 'When you bang your head on a wall it eventually stops hurting'. Well. While going through years of rent review, I became very depressed and then suicidal and had a nervous breakdown. This was healed through taking medication and one to one counselling; I'm lucky I found a brilliant therapist... and banging my head on that wall finally stopped hurting the day the Fair Pint Campaign launched and it was all over the MA and Publican front pages.

It's till insane though but the judge got my angle on the surreality of it all straight away. Unlike S&NPC's solicitor who actually said "You're paying your staff instead of paying your rent", referring to their opinion that my wages bill is too high... I liked that one. And then, at the top of the court stairs, as a parting shot: "I'm just doing my job". I like that one too. 20 years of doing a job like that would have me rocking back and forth in a straight jacket.

Good to see S&NPC prepared to talk to MA more responsively than they generally do with me. They are consistent though; they never respond to emails, telephone calls or follow up anything from meetings unless it's of the most anodyn nature. Their policy "NEVER put ANYTHING in writing. EVER". Gets them off loads of hooks. See clause 11 of their Codes of Practice.

Fair Pinter keeps pub but has to pay £135k S&NPC debt

Something strange happened on my keyboard to make a duplicate post. Anyhow. Since there doesn't appear to be anything Sub Judice about this now I may as well be a little more transparent than I have been in the past.

Working with S&NPC for well over a decade has been like being in a static circus staffed by clowns, idiots, fools and dunderheads with no one in charge. IT IS A JOKE. S&N totally rolled me over at first rent review in 2000 which almost put me out of business - I had to completely change the way my business ran, make staff redundant and work far longer hours myself to keep it going to pay the back rent that time. That was a great example of working with 'your perfect pub partner'. Like they say on their website:


"With S&NPC you run your pub your way but you also have the backing of one of the world’s largest brewing operations who can supply the brands, the training and everything else you need to achieve your ambitions in the pub industry."

"We pride ourselves on offering British pub goers the best possible pub experience and we achieve this through a continuous programme of investment in both our pubs and the people who run them."

"After the merger (Heineken takeover more like - S&N employees call it 'Amsterdam') S&N’s leased pub operation was renamed Scottish & Newcastle Pub Company (S&NPC) and whilst our name may have changed our commitment to restoring British pubs to their rightful place at the heart of their communities remains the same." Oh STOP it! Making my sides split! It's HURTING!

In October 2008 I asked for a Code of Practice rent review, in writing. This has never been referred to except obliquely in two instances. First time was in 2009: "Can't to a COP review when there is already a rent review happening". Second time, in 2011 was 'Why did you ask for a COP rent review in 2008?". That was before they issued papers for forfeiture. I WILL be taking this nonsense further.

edited by: J Mark Dodds at: 15/07/2011 13:44:21

A couple of weeks ago I was telling Simon Townsend how Fair Pint came to be set up; using the process of this insane rent review as my analogy (which is that if I'd had a rational rent review there would be no Fair Pint Campaign) - the rent review took sooooooo so long that gradually I became very depressed. My depression caused frequent panic attacks in places like the cash and carry, or at the family dinner table, and then I started with insomnia, massive night sweats; waking chills and falling asleep during the day. Eventually I began to think about committing suicide. It felt like killing myself would take a great problem away from my partner and kids, give my business partner a break and my parents could finally stop worrying about me.

This was my Tipping Point: Going to my GP and telling him I thought I was ill. He gave me a quick answer questionnaire to fill in. He scored it. He said: "You've scored 28 out of 35, hmmmm... that's pretty serious. You need help. Are you prepared to take it?".

He prescribed anti depressants and intensive one to one counselling...

the process of my impending bakruptcy was taking so long that

then started getting creative . I was trying to make the point that

I don't have time to finish this...

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