Diners daring to criticise a pub on TripAdviser have suffered comprehensive put-downs from a landlord who ‘damns’ customers for being ‘up their own a***s’.
Graham Webb brands online critics of The Peacock in Bakewell, Derbyshire, ‘cowards’ and insists on responding to every negative review by unleashing ‘banter’ and insults.
The 59-year-old from Barnsley, south Yorkshire, branded one customer a ‘wretch’ and says he takes pride in ridiculing reviewers who slate service and prices at his pub.
The 59-year-old makes a point of responding to every negative review about his pub and has told critics they are ‘not wanted here’
‘If anyone ever has a go at my pub or staff I like to throw it back at them,’ he said.
‘I like to put a different twist on it and I’m never going to say sorry.
‘When I go on TripAdvisor to respond to a poor review I’m sticking up for myself and my pub.
‘I’m damning them on behalf of my team. I like to put a bit of honesty and humour into my response.
‘I don’t have to think about it for long, it’s all banter in my head and it comes flowing out.’
The landlord says his acerbic responses are his way of sticking up for hard-working staff at the pub
The landlord has run the pub for 10 years with 55-year-old partner Victoria Siddall.
But he told how some customers still moaned and groaned and at times he feels trolled by Trip Advisor reviewers, some of which are published using pseudonyms.
‘You rarely get the complimentary posts but the unfavourable ones and I’m here to defend all the honest hard graft that goes into this pub if we’re criticised,’ he said.
‘I never ignore a review, I always answer and I try to give and tongue-in-cheek reply and take the mickey out of them and they soon shut up!
‘No one horse-whips me’: The Peacock’s landlord fights back against negative reviews
Response to criticism of ‘over-priced’ ‘bang ordinary’ burger: ‘What is your cup of tea choosybugger – well certainly being devious and un-toward as you post your second condemnation of the burgers we serve… what a wretch you are.’
Response to accusations he has a ‘miserable’ workforce: ‘What a strange even horrible person you appear to be… no I’ll go even further, you are a crank and obviously not a very nice person… now go and live your interesting life in someone else’s depth’s of despair as you are certainly not wanted here.’
Response to ‘poor service’ allegation: ‘Why didn’t you mention your issue at the check out!’
Response to reviewer advising punters to ‘go somewhere else’:
‘You’re a joke… such is the freedom you have by hitting your phone, social media is not your friend, it is your surveillance engine.’
‘People always have different views but some can be so up their own a***s.
‘They get frustrated and fall out with themselves really but blame us.
‘We’re a well-oiled industrial machine here and we’re not going to take any criticism when we know we’re right.
‘No one horse-whips me and I can stick up for myself and answer in my own words.
‘Critics hide behind aliases they go away and say it, a coward’s approach, but won’t say it to my face.’
Mr Webb says his partner of 20 years never gets involved in his Trip Advisor replies, which are now becoming legendary for their wit and acidity.
‘She just has a go at me for wasting time doing it,’ he said.
‘Most people get it and embrace my response as a bit of fun and something different but some don’t.
‘I’ve even hate mail posted to the pub’s email address complaining that I’ve been too rude in my replies.’
Mr Webb lives above the pub and works behind the bar, employing 10 chefs, service staff and pot washers.
Among his top chefs is Steve Hunter, who last year cooked lunch for The Queen.
Mr Hunter, 40, who also prepares meals for Sheffield United footballers, said: ‘Some are quite amusing. People do like to complain about random stuff but he gives as good as he gets.’
He cooked chicken and leek pie for Her Majesty when she visited Sheffield to hand out Maundy money during last year’s Easter ceremony while employed as a Town Hall chef.
Graham Webb, pictured with bar worker Poppy Marsden, never lets a negative review go unnoticed and insists on responding to every keyboard critic
The pub also catered for Great British Bake Off judge Mary Berry, co- hosts Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc and the BBC production team when they visited Bakewell during an early series of the hit show.
Mr Webb said: ‘If my chef is good enough to cook for The Queen, he’s good enough for the people of Bakewell.
‘Bakewell isn’t a singing and dancing town, it’s a quaint laid back place and my pub is small, traditional, plain and simple. And very good! We have a five-star rating for food and hygiene.
‘I have made a few mistakes along the way and some people are keen to jump on that but I’ve learned.
Complaints about the Peacock’s prices and service have been slammed by its landlord, who dismissed some customers as ‘up their own a***s’
‘One Trip Adviser reviewer complained that staff didn’t deliver condiments to accompany his meal and he was made to get up and fetch them, others say staff are rude and food and beer are too pricey.
‘My favourite response was to someone claiming to be fictitious Lord Unsworth.’
Mr Webb says negative reviews could deter drinkers and diners but ‘it’s not a problem’.
‘Just last week a couple came, having nearly been put off after reading some bad reviews, and they were so pleased they’d judged for themselves because they had the best fish and chips,’ he said.
The landlord’s humour is reflected in a sign in car park warning: ‘No parking in front of the gates or we will let your tyres down.’
Mr Webb says customers who have bad experiences at his pub have only themselves to blame
Above the bar a notice states: ‘We don’t do Wifi – talk to each other! Well of course we do but we would rather you talk to each other.’
Barmaid and waitress Poppy Marsden, 22, who has worked at The Peacock for two years, says: ‘His replies on Trip Advisor are legendry, lots of people are talking about them. They’re just a giggle, you can’t take them too seriously.’
The pub boasts in its website: ‘The Peacock is steeped in history and has undergone continuous renovation over the last few years to become one of Bakewell’s quality dining and luxury accommodation venues.
‘The food serves if traditional, wholesome British and Continental cuisine with a fresh and modern approach.’