THE brewery owner of a working man’s club in Hull has apologised unreservedly after a “ludicrous” ban preventing women from playing snooker was lifted.
It came after a complaint by Donna Anderson, who was told to sit down midway through a snooker game at the Buckingham Club, in east Hull, because of a long-standing ‘men only’ rule.
Brother-in-law Wayne Anderson, who was asked to take over, at first thought it was a joke: “All of us were having a drink as we have done for the last 10 years, there was a doubles match going on and my sister-in-law got up to play. They asked me to take over. I thought it was some kind of joke and started to laugh, but the landlord said it was on the rule board, though we couldn’t see it. It is ludicrous.”
After publicity about the case the club has backed down.
Manager Mike Dalton-Goldspink claimed the ban came in “many years ago when women first started to join the club.”
He added: “Following the upset with Donna I’ve been in contact with the brewery and the rule has been lifted so women can play.”
Mrs Anderson’s daughter Holly said it was like being back in the 1800s when women were prevented from playing games, and her mum had felt “isolated and excluded.”
But she was pleased the club had relented.
Marston’s owns the club. Spokesman Jeremy Eaton said: “What Mr Dalton-Goldspink said to the customers is completely ridiculous and should not be tolerated in business or life today and we offer an unreserved apology to the people involved.
“Mr Dalton-Goldspink, is a partner and not an employee of Marston’s, and we will be discussing this with him within the next 24 hours to resolve the situation.”
Men-only rules were outlawed in most circumstances in 1975 by the Sexual Discrimination Act. In 1982, a woman sued and won her case against a landlord who banned women from playing snooker.