A man in Dorset has claimed to have been branded a “predatory gay man” after he was banned from his local pub for complimenting a male bartender.

Philip Poolman, 48, has accused the owners of the The Museum Inn, near Blandford in Dorset, of homophobic discrimination.

He spoke to the Western Daily Press of how he was taken aside by a manageress and informed he was no longer welcome at the country pub because his behaviour was that of “a predatory gay man.”

He said: “I told the young barman I thought he was cute and he took offence at this and then left his job at the end of the session.

“I have been told that I lost the guy his job. I was told I am a predatory gay man and that the barman was too frightened to leave the place as it was dark and he was afraid that I was going to jump on him. I might be gay but I am not a rapist.

“I have no remorse and don’t see why I should have. During each week I used to spend around £200 in the place. That’s their loss. I feel so ashamed that in this day and age I feel like I have been victimised.”

The pub is owned by pub chain Cirrus Inns. A spokesman for the company responded this week, saying: “He has been banned until further investigation, because his comments left a member of staff distressed.

“The well-being of our staff, as well as the needs of the business, is our utmost priority.”