Staff at a restaurant and bar near Bristol have been banned from visiting the bar area unless they are on shift.
The ban has been implemented by new management at Hall & Woodhouse in Portishead as a ‘precautionary short-term measure’ while an investigation is carried out into ‘stock discrepancy incidents on the premises’, a spokesperson said.
A relative of someone who works at the marina venue contacted Bristol Live to criticise the enforcement, labelling it as ‘draconian’ and claiming it has had a negative impact on staff morale.
“The way the new managers are treating staff is wrong and simply odd,” said the whistle-blower, who wanted to remain anonymous.
(Image: jon Kent/Bristol Live)
“All staff used to have their own tab and a slight discount which has been taken away, but that’s not the worst part.
“The really shocking thing is that staff are now barred from the bar unless they are working. It’s really bizarre and people are up in arms about it.
“Even though they live in the area and work hard, they are only allowed in that area if they’re turning up for work.
“The staff are such a great team of people and they can’t understand why this is happening – the treatment is completely unfair and feels draconian.”
The building is split into sections over two floor with the bar downstairs and the dining room upstairs. Staff are allowed to enjoy a meal with their friends and family but are now allowed in the downstairs area.
(Image: jon Kent/Bristol Live)
‘We are confident that this temporary request will be lifted shortly ‘
Hall & Woodhouse was founded in 1777 and today has an estate of 180 pubs across the south of England.
It prides itself on being a ‘values-led business where its team are at the heart of everything it aspires to’.
The group’s Head of Town Pubs, Stuart Skeels, confirmed that two people have left the company as a result of the ongoing investigation, adding that the temporary ban has not had a negative impact.
He told Bristol Live: “We have temporarily requested that our team members at Hall & Woodhouse Portishead do not frequent the bar area when they are not working on shift.
“This precautionary short-term measure is limited solely to Hall & Woodhouse Portishead and has been put into place to protect our valued team members while we investigate stock discrepancy incidents on the premises.
(Image: Blackmore Vale Magazine)
“These isolated incidents have in no way affected the personal security or enjoyment of our guests or wider members of the public.
“As a result of the internal investigation, two team members have left the company and we are confident that this temporary request will be lifted shortly once our investigations are complete.”
Mr Skeels added that ‘supporting our team members is of utmost priority and we are in constant communication with them to give updates on the situation’.
He said Hall & Woodhouse is proud that staff want to spend their free time at their place of work and that ‘we look forward to returning to our standard team member policy at Hall & Woodhouse Portishead as soon as possible’.
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