Bedford pub apologies for barring pensioner - for being too loud!

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A veteran soldier who admits he has the loudest voice in town has received an apology from a pub that barred him for being too noisy.

Sid Lovitt, 74, spent years as a Street Angel, helping Bedford’s clubbers and drinkers stay safe and avoid trouble.

He was mortified when he found himself this month BANNED from Yates’s pub and escorted off the premises by burly security men.

His only “crime”, he says, was wearing an England hat while watching a World Cup game.

“I tried to talk to the manager reasonably about it. I never swear and I try to always be polite. But I have a very loud voice,” he told the T&C.

“I can’t help it. I’ve always had a really loud voice but it doesn’t mean I’m shouting.

“ I was in the army for nine years and I had to shout to be heard. Since then I can’t seem to talk quietly.”

Mr Lovitt, who lives in Cavendish Street, admits to calling the manger a “twot” for barring him – but swears he used no other offensive words.

He said being escorted from Yates’s was the “ultimate humiliation”.

“I was put out on the streets – the very streets where I used to help people as a Street Angel.

“I’m just an OAP who wanted to watch the England game. I never expected to be thrown out of a pub at my age.”

A born-again Christian, Mr Lovitt retired from his Street Angel duties when his wife died a year ago.

“I still haven’t got over losing my dear wife, and then this happens. It has really upset me,” he said.

The T&C contacted Yates head office, who spoke to the manager of the Bedford high Street bar.

This week the pub giants, who are part of the Stonegate group, gave him an official apology.

A spokesman said: “Our customers are incredibly important to us and as soon as we became aware of this matter we reached out to Mr Lovitt to apologise for the experience he had.”

Meanwhile Bedford Street Angels are continuing their good work in the town. The scheme was founded by the town’s churches following the tragic murder of Robert Gill, on Boxing Day 2007.

Its aim is to provide unconditional, non-judgemental support and practical help to those who have become vulnerable to crime or distress. It uses the biblical example of the Good Samaritan on which to mould its values.

For details see www.
bedfordstreetangels.org.uk