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Canterbury gay bar owner ‘threatened’ with anti-gay arson attacks and city council licence withdrawals

  • “We simply have a duty to investigate noise complaints of this
    nature. The council has received three complaints from different
    residents regarding the Limes Lounge since October 2013 when the current
    landlord took over.”

    Other local authorities investigate noise complaints themselves, using decibel measurement, they also take into account the age of the venue and the point at which those complainants moved in.

    For example, if the pub has been there for fifty years, and someone moved in last month and started complaining about the noise, their complaint cannot be taken too seriously as they knew there was a pub right next door. There should still be objective measurement of the levels, but someone cannot move in next to a venue and then start demanding their surroundings conform to their wishes.

    I don’t buy this excuse from the council one bit. They clearly have a reputation for homophobia, and they very likely have ties to the local religious loon who came in (this is the same in every city and every town, the “clergy” usually have sympathetic sheep in local government willing to pull some strings and do them some favours).

    It would be interesting to see the evidence the council has for this “pressure” being brought to bear on the landlord, but we won’t see that. I have a feeling they are acting under the concerted efforts of their local “God botherers”.

    • Jesus_Mohammed

      Yes, indeed, it’s nothing but Canterbury’s long-established homophobia, which is outrageous given Canterbury’s status as the international seat of the Anglican cult!

      And Canterbury’s homophobia is a perfect example with which to disprove the revisionist baloney published today by Matthew Parris in “The Times”, in which he goes on about how wonderfully open and warm and welcoming Britain has been to British LGBTs!

      Matthew Parris, sickening fawning Tory toad, trying to scramble onto something good once it’s been accomplished primarily by the blood, sweat, and tears of campaigners and activists of the left! There are people on these threads, like Robert W. Pierce, who did a million times more for ensuring we got SSM through than Matthew Parris, not to mention stalwarts in the Commons and the Lords, like Waheed Ali!

      “Who would have thought it?” Parris keeps asking in his piece! Totally dumb question. He implies no one thought it, that no one had the vision, that no one had the dream, that no one was fighting like hell, that no one was organizing protests and demonstrations and petitions, as has been the case! Last year during the fight for SSM, I don’t remember hearing anything helpful or remarkable coming from Parris.

      Owen Jones’s new book “The Establishment – and how they get away with it”, should make great reading! I wonder how Parris would review it! Surely in no way that might jeopardise his own foothold in the establishment, his own chance of getting an even stronger foothold, a gone even!

    • Benjamin Scott-Pye

      Yep. There was an issue where I lived in Falmouth where a neighbour was going around trying to get the local rugby club shut down because they hold big nights there. You really can’t hear much from the street in question, or any of the others. You occasionally have a few drunken stragglers walking past being a bit loud but they are there for about 30 seconds and then you can’t hear them anymore.

      I think really those people who start these kinds of petitions are compensating for an empty life. I never went to the rugby club. I’m not really one for going out and getting shitfaced and dancing all night, but I think people should be allowed to do that.

      • Jesus_Mohammed

        Benjamin, do you have any evidence that this particular gay bar in
        Canterbury was regularly causing a public nuisance, that its customers
        were “getting shitfaced and dancing all night”?

        In my experience of the gay bars which were in Canterbury, and which have since closed down because of external pressure, they were each extremely quiet and careful, largely because they constantly felt threatened.

        • The_Obvious

          You could try reading his comment before commenting…

  • Robert in S. Kensington

    Of course they deny it’s homophobia, but look where the pub is, right in the heart of the Anglican church with Canterbury Cathedral just around the corner with its share of religious nutters. I grew up in Kent just 17 miles from Canterbury and I’ve always known that town to be very conservative and not very gay friendly. I hope the landlord doesn’t lose his licence. It will be interesting to find out who the vicar is.

    • Jesus_Mohammed

      Glad to read of someone else having knowledge of Canterbury! I lived there for several years. Canterbury is superficially attractive: lots of listed buildings and architectural character, and the people seem cheery and sunny. But you eventually discover that the whole East Kent peninsula is seriously backward! And, yes, that damned cathedral and the presecne of the Archbishop’s palace exerts one hell of an influence on everything that goes on in Canterbury! The council and the mayor are in league with the cathedral.

      I led a campaign amongst residents in my street against the arrival of a very rough pub which was proposing multiple giant screens for showing sports events, not to mention an unashamed policy of “vertical drinking”, i.e. no tables and chairs, but squashing in as many standing drinkers as possible. Given that there’s a big army barracks just outside Canterbury that pub would have turned our street into a hell-hole.

      Winning the campaign won me the admiration of the Mayor of Canterbury! He invited me to his impressive old office for afternoon tea, in an ancient tower near one of the city gates! He had clearly never considered that I might be gay, because suddenly he was saying that the main purpose of the invitation to tea was to ask me for my support in closing down a once-a-week gay club just outside the city walls, near Morrisons supermarket! The tea turned suddenly bitter, I gave him a piece of my mind, I left, and I eventually realised that being surrounded by religious nitwits in Canterbury for the rest of my life was a no-no.

      While I lived in Canterbury I learnt that all those administrators who work in the cathedral’s offices are very very powerful. The council just jumps to their tunes.

      What would help bring Canterbury into 21st century is a massive influx of black and Asian people. Beside the odd African bishop to be seen wandering sanctimoniously around the grounds of the cathedral, and the few Asians keeping themselves out of sight within the Indian restaurants, there’s not a black or brown face to be seen in Canterbury. The estate agents all act as gate-keepers and keep them out, always giving them excuses as to why they can’t show them properties for sale or rent!

      Canterbury stinks. But what would you expect. It’s the global centre of the Anglican cult.

  • Skimble

    I didn’t even know we HAD a gay bar in Canterbury again. My boyfriend and I are thinking about going there for a drink later on today.

  • Keith —

    The level of ignorance on here is breathtaking yet completely expected.
    The council is being accused of homophobia. Homophobia is an irrational fear homosexuals.
    Where is the evidence that the council, as a group, have an irrational fear of homosexuals? Therfailed to is none of course. Homophobia and bigotry are words that you vile lot like to bandy about when some group or person does not pander to your every wish and nuance of your deviant, narcissistic agenda.
    Have Canterbury council broken a single equality law?
    Have they published or said anything that shows a hatred or irrational fear of homosexuals?
    If they have acted in a homophobic manner, this would clearly be a breach of equality laws, so why have the affected members homosexual community not sued Canterbury Council?
    Answer, because it is all in their twisted minds.
    The world is not and never will be a gay world, heteronormative is the by far the majority demographic…Get over it!

    • Elena V

      That has got to be the most homophobic argument defending someone from being homophobic that I have ever seen

    • Serkan M

      Well someones in self denial.

    • Jones

      So you are saying that someone threatening to set fire to a place because it is a venue for gay people, isn’t homophobia?

    • Can I ask why you are even here?

      Clearly, you are either wallowing in the depths of self-loathing, or you are a homophobic bigot trolling for the sake of trolling.

      Do you really not have anything better to do with your existence?

    • Tyranny of the Majority isn’t the same as Democracy. Otherwise, the African American demographic in the USA, which is only 14% of the US population would likewise be being told by you “White is normal, get over it!”

    • :)

      I agree. People who hate homosexuals aren’t homophobes, they’re just arseholes.

    • Ra

      Dear Keith is not phobic at all. No. Completely sane to troll and rant on a gay site, professing the heteronormativeness of the world and his absence of fear of gays. Not fearful or phobic at all , even though he calls us a vile lot. Deluded a bit there Keith, or is it just in the gay’s twisted minds.
      Poor Keith. Poor, ignorant Keith. When you get a break from your trolling, do a bit of research: Freud, and the psychological terms: “projection”, “delusion” and “anal retentive”.
      If you are not thinking with love, you are fearful.

    • DZ

      You want an answer, well here you get one. First I wanna point out that I won’t comment on the case about the bar, this is about the rest of your comment.

      First, homophobia is real (so is transphobia in case you believed otherwise). People get killed because they’re gay (or people believe they’re gay) every day. How many people get killed for being straight? Not many as far as I know.

      Second, irrational fear does not necessarily mean feeling really scared and wanting to run away like one’s nuts are on fire. Irrational fear, like in some cases of homophobia, can be stuff like feeling uncomfortable about knowing a certain person is gay or that there is gay people in [insert place/organization/school/work/etc.] because of different reasons. Or it can be fear of what’s gonna happen if gay people are treated like everyone else.

      Oh, the good, old “gay agenda”, don’t people get tired of using it against the queer community? Anyway, as far as I know there’s no collective plan of turning the whole world into a gay world. You got that part wrong. We, at least many of us, want equality, not world domination.
      All the years of demonstrations, lobbying, parades, rainbows and all that have been necessary in order to make changes. I know we can sound whiny at times, but if we were silent all the time we’d just be ignored.

      • Keeiitthh

        You ask if I want an answer then you ignore the question I asked and go off on the usual ‘victims’ route.
        What relevance does any of that have to do with Canterbury Couincil being wrongly accused of homophobia, which was the subject of my post?
        Incidentally, your definition of homophobia exists only in your mind, not in any dictionary and your rhetoric could also apply to the consensual adult male incestuous, a group which are criminalized despite the fact they harm nobody. This demonstrates that sometimes it is correct to be opposed to certain unions and sexual practice, regardless of whether they are consenting adults or not.
        Now, do you have evidence of Canterbury Council’s homophobia?

        • DZ

          I’m sorry for not answering about Canterbury Council, but as I have never been to Canterbury nor watch the British news, I can’t lay any concrete evidence. I have heard that the council have been accused for homophobia before, though I don’t wan’t to claim they’re homophobes, only that they might be.

          I still stand by my first comment because while it may not be about the Canterbury council case, it still stand as a response to several parts of your comment.

          My “definition” of homophobia was ment as an example of what else the word could mean, not ment as a straight-from-a-dictionary-definition.
          And homophobia is a word that exists in several dictionaries like Collins, Merriam-Webster and Oxford dictionary to mention a few.
          Here’s an interesting fact: the word “phobia” means “a strong fear, dislike or aversion”.

          ‘Victimd’ route? That wasn’t my intention, but whatever. Out of curiousity I’ll ask you what exactly is the “usual ‘victims’ route”?

          Oh, I almost forgot to ask you this, do you have concrete evidence that there’s no existence of even the slightest little piece of homophobia within the Canterbury council?

    • saintlaw

      I guess it’s sad an all that you’re so ugly no one – man, woman or dog – will go near your slack bumhole with a tazer.

      However, venting your impotence on internet comment boards simply makes you seem even more pathetic than you otherwise would do.

      Hope this helps.


    • Psychologist


      I’ve written a book on the psychology of homophobia, and lecture on it too. So Here ARE the FACTS !
      Homo-PHOBIA (as with ALL PHOBIAS) is a psychological disorder.
      A PHOBIA is “an irrational fear of …. something”.
      Homo-PHOBIA is an irrational fear of homo-SEXUALITY (NOT, as you claim of homo-SEXUALS – that is just the displacement/projection of their fear). The (apparently) irrational fear of homosexuality is actually the fear of THEIR OWN supressed homosexuality breaking free, through the suppression (denial). The reason it became denied/suppressed to begin with, is due to negative anti-gay and homophobic conditioning from society, ESPECIALLY perpetuated by religions, where they have a great deal of influence over people’s thinking and behaviour. Religious conditioning that gay is wrong, then causes SOME people who are really gay to suppress their TRUE feelings and gay desires, and then they FEAR (NOT-consciously) those feelings in their unconscious, in case they break though their suppression system, and become consciously KNOWN and acted upon – as this would be in direct conflict with the religious conditioning (which often CAN’T be undone so easily – at least not without therapeutic help).
      This DEFINATELY applies to YOU – You are clearly OVERLY-CONCERNED with homosexuality, to be straight, as well as displaying high levels of homophobia. This would ONLY happen by you being in denial of your TRUE gay sexual orientation.

      There is not ONLY a “correlation” between being in denial of being gay, and homophobia – but it is a direct CAUSE of it. Religious anti-gay conditioning being the biggest culprit in causing this, because it is THAT conditioning which leads people to supress their homosexuality in the first place – which in turn manifests into homo-phobia.

      Truly straight men have no fear of the sexual orientation of SOMEONE ELSE – they are INDIFFERENT to the sexual orientation of OTHERS (neither repulsed by, not attracted to). You “appear” repulsed by gay sex, which exposes your TRUE sexual orientation as gay.

      The council are clearly contra to the recent anti-discrimination laws, and should be reported as such. The council ARE indeed being HOMOPHOBIC, as a collection of people who display homophobia (as a result of their OWN issues, along with other “sheep-like” people who collude with it) are collectively homophobic ! The legal definition of “social homophobia” is the term used by the legal establishment/police to describe discrimination against someone’s sexual orientation. (So the term homophobia can also be used in this context).
      The real issue here is – KEITH … you’re GAY !!!!!!
      You show way too much interest in displaying your own homophobia, to NOT be gay. (You’re using a defence mechanism called “Reaction Formation”, in attempt to display how “repulsed” you are to gay sex, as a result of you denying your clear attraction to it.

      • Jesus_Mohammed

        Well done, “Psychologist”, but we’re used to “Keith” on these threads. Keith is a mentally-ill person who has been coming here for many years to exercise his delusions. Just use the “Flag” facility on the right-hand side, and hope that the moderators will just expunge his presence here.

        • Psychologist

          Jesus_Mohammed – “Peace be upon you” ! :)
          Thank you for your comments.

          Yes, indeed KEITH shows many indications in his MANY comments on here, that he is clearly mentally ill.
          One of the main reasons for his mental disorder (though there may be others too), is his excessively high levels of clear frustration, anger and hostility to “gayness” – this is as a direct result of him suppressing his OWN. He then uses projection/displacement defence mechanisms, in order to attempt to “externalise” (onto others who are openly gay) the very anger and frustration he really feels for HIMSELF ! Denying who we really are is HIGHLY damaging, and can lead to massive amounts of internal anger, which becomes projected outwards (onto others), in order to relieve some of the inner anger and internal conflict.
          In layman’s terms .. KEITH is in a real mess (as can clearly be seen in his aggressive comments) and really should be helped therapeutically. Whoever conditioned him to suppress his gayness, should also take responsibility for damaging someone’s life too. It was almost certainly religion. That’s the usual culprit !

  • John Morrison

    As a local resident and visitor to the venue, I understand one of the complaints made over noise was from a man who had publicly threatened to burn down this gay venue. Even though the Council were made aware of this, they continue to view his complaint as legitimate! Short of the Council handing the man a box of matches, it is difficult to see how much further they can go in supporting homophobic attacks and harassment of the gay community. Presumably if Canterbury had a local Klan, crosses would be made available for burning………

    Unfortunately the authorities are under the same delusion of self- denial over institutional homophobia as the Metropolitan Police were over racism. They simply do not understand that you cannot allow a small number of individuals to use the ‘Process of Law’ as a shield to hide their homophobic hatred. A previous Gay bar was also closed down following a campaign of harassment over supposed noise complaints. One resident filmed gay managers of the bar in their private living quarters from outside and one even stormed in and turned over the tables and chairs.

    At the public meeting to consider a licence review, one person shouted out ‘This lot should never have been let in the City in the first place’. Although representations were made for this homophobic comment to be include in the official records, to reflect the true nature and motivation for the harassment, it was instead quietly dropped. And this is the point the Council doesn’t get, it cannot simply allow would be arsonists and hate mongers to hide behind the official processes, thereby allowing the Council to state ‘We did nothing wrong, we were only following ‘orders’……..

    • Lee

      Again,anyone threatening publicly to burn down a gay venue should certainly have had a visit from Inspector Knacker and his lads from Kent Constabulary at an early opportunity. The idea that this lunatics ‘complaints’ were then continued to be taken seriously by the council is quite outrageous. If they did,they deserve to be ridiculed by the media.

    • pwnage

      ‘A previous Gay bar was also closed down following a campaign of harassment over supposed noise complaints’… it would be interesting to see if history repeats itself. perhaps, pn or you can keep us updated regarding the complaints?

  • Lee

    With regard to the ‘gentleman of the cloth’ who turned up telling customers he could ‘cleanse’ them, I think the police should have been called immediately. ‘Breach of the peace’ at least I should think. Laughing at something does not make it go away. Also would be very interesting to know who he was and which church he was affilaited to [if any] as well.

    • Jesus_Mohammed

      Lee, the problem in Canterbury is that the council, the mayor, the police, and the cathedral administration are as thick as thieves – never mind all the small-minded church-going East Kent locals who don’t want any queers around.

      “The Rocky Horror Show” and suchlike doesn’t do very well in Canterbury’s theatre.

  • Jim

    The council can’t act on the evidence of the complainants it will be laughed out of court the noise officer needs to get out investigate and gather real evidence not use hearsay from someone else.

  • Craig

    I ran a gay bar called co2, I had the same problems, all the neighbours were homophobic and the only way they could refuse our hours extension was based on noise, however I worked closely with environmental dept and did all we could, it was clear that Canterbury council do not want a gay venue. Some of the objections were homophobic and instead of reporting them the council helped the neighbours re write them. The city is so focused on religion that they are stuck in the dark ages, and the city’s residents seem to rule the council. It’s a bigoted place and I’m in no hurry to return, I feel sorry for the owners of this bar, I wish them all the luck and support from the LGBT community as they will need it! :

  • Gerry

    Canterbury is also afflicted with Julian Brazier MP…

    • Jesus_Mohammed

      Indeed, is AFFLICTED with Julian Brazier, who is as right-wing and as Catholic as Tories come!

      While living in Canterbury I wrote to him on a number of important moral issues and on each occasion got a long letter back from him rejecting my urgings and requests, and always I could tell he was simply spouting the claptrap of his narrow-minded and bigoted religious cult. Catholicism thrives in the dominating shadows of Canterbury Cathedral, of course!

      Getting this totally odious public-school Tory prat OUT at the next election would be a start to turning that part of backward Kent around.

  • █ █ █ €ώąɲ█ █ █

    The publican should go to the high court, get an appeal done.

    The council are breaching anti-discrim laws.

    As regards to this pathetic excuse for a vicar (what ever happen to Christian love) he should be prosecuted for hate crimes which is what he is doing.

  • lee

    how come the council don’t act so quick with noisy neighbours ? I suggest you have a cctv put in mate so the police can be called and people tracked if they are making threats – as for the vicar I tell him to piss off period

  • Mavis Moog

    I am not gay but this story and the comments have made me note that Canterbury is somewhere I will not be visiting. What a nasty place! I am very sorry that such a rat’s nest exists in England in what I thought were enlightened times. The city council needs fumigating.

    • soapbubble

      Me too! What a backwater it sounds! Probably full of UKiPbidiots too.

  • Yva Angel

    This is ridiculous. I didn’t even know there was a new gay bar, and it’s already under fire. I’ll be making a point to go there now in support. There was a bit of a joke about gay bars in Canterbury being cursed… But unfortunately (obviously) the explanation is a lot more mundane, and has a lot to do with it being a cathedral city…

  • Andrew Allcock

    Does the challenging of
    one bigotry have to involve the invocation of another? Oh the glee in
    the heart of the journalist as they record the crass remarks of
    someone wearing a dog-collar. Don’t get me wrong, as a clergyman I
    want to publicly place as much distance between myself and this
    “vicar” as cyberspace will allow, but the particular and
    deliberate attention given to the fact that one of incidents of
    homophobia experienced was perpetrated by a Christian does no more
    than pander to the unthinking anti-Christian stance of many
    promoting gay rights. If there have been a plethora of verbal attacks
    on this pub then why only highlight this one if not to rehearse a

    Scrolling to the bottom
    of the page I picked-up this strapline for Pink News: “we cover
    politics to theology in an intelligent manner”; not on this
    occasion, apparently.

    All the journalist says
    in this article is “my bigotry is OK but the one I’m reporting on

    A couple of years ago I
    wrote to Stephen Fry to complain about one of his remarks on “QI”
    when he pronounced homosexuals and Christians to be enemies. And how,
    exactly, does that help young Christians struggling with the
    expression of their sexuality? If we wish to stamp out bigotry then
    possibly we need to have the courage to start with our own if we wish
    others to cease theirs.

    • Yva Angel

      The word bigotry a) implies the feeling to be irrational, and b) implies a power imbalance which does not (and cannot) exist as you have painted it, a “two-way street”. I am obviously against people having anything against anyone else for their sexuality or their religion, and personally I do not. But I’m afraid it is up to Christianity to continue to work against the homophobic stance they are infamous for, not up to the LGBT community to change their minds when they haven’t been given sufficient evidence. Christians enjoy a place of privilege in this country and while I’m not insinuating that wearing a dog collar provides anyone protection from abuse, I’d outright laugh at anyone who thought that straight Christians in this country had as hard a time of it as LGBT people of any religion or lack thereof. So basically, if you’re that offended by the association between homophobia and Christianity, which by this point is a knee-jerk safety mechanism, then continue to do your part to change it, rather than blame others for making it.

  • John Morrison

    Craig’s comment, revealing that the Council actively assisted people with homophobic views to alter their complaints ,so that they could be treated as genuine, is frankly damning. Ordinarily within Canterbury, a partnership exists between the Council and Kent Police when dealing with licencing/ crime and public order issues. Unfortunately what should have been referred and investigated as homophobic hate crime at both Craig’s old bar and the new one, was simply airbrushed out of existence. A clear reason for restoring the separation of powers between the Police and the Council! Instead it would appear, we have a relationship akin to that of a self oiling axle!

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