Lincolnshire pub reverts to cash-only pints amid rising fees

Cash over cards: Local pub's bold financial move
Joseph Verney

Joseph Verney

Lincolnshire pub reverts to cash-only pints amid rising fees

In a bold move bucking the digital trend, a North Lincolnshire market town pub is set to become a cash-only establishment next month.

The Dying Gladiator in Brigg is owned by Eugene Irwin and managed by Siobhan McKenna (pictured together above).

The pub said due to “increasing charges from banks and card companies” it had made the decision to revert to cash only transactions to “cut down on our overheads and prevent us putting an increase onto the customer”.

Patrons will need to pocket their plastic and dust off their banknotes as the pub on Bigby Street prepares for traditional monetary exchanges only, starting from December 1, 2023.

The Dying Gladiator's manager Siobhan McKenna and owner Eugene Irwin.

Manager Siobhan McKenna explained the reasons for going cardless: “We had already cut back everywhere possible by reducing our hours on a Monday and Tuesday and also reducing staff where possible.

“We had shopped around with all utilities and general outgoings and rather than put another increase onto the customer, we had to look elsewhere for savings.

“Within the last 12 months we have paid over £2,000 in costs with card machines.

“At times the machines run slow, or the internet doesn’t connect, losing us business as people hadn’t been carrying cash, which is why we have given prior notice.

“Our card machine suppliers have been fantastic, even upgrading the machines, but it still is a cost which we can’t afford. We are a sole trader so unfortunately all bills and staffing fall to us.

“Since the pandemic our weekly running costs have increased by 30-35%.”

She added: “The idea had come from seeing businesses taking the decision back home [in Ireland] and from what we’ve seen happening there.

“I’ve seen it here with one of the main promenade restaurants in Cleethorpes leading the way.

“We are grateful for the support from our customers and hopefully this will continue.”

The Dying Gladiator pub is located on Bigby Street in Brigg.

People on social media appeared to support the pub’s stance, including Gaz Dayo who said: “That’s brilliant…way to go. It’s what all smaller businesses should be doing.”

David Armstrong believes “everywhere should be cash only” while Tina Irvine says it’s “about time we started putting cash back into the system.”

James Weldon said: “Hope more local shops and pubs join you in only accepting cash payments.”

Paul Elvy said: “Totally agree. Anything to help you guys to stop paying VAT… and bank charges. They take enough off us poor souls.”

Helena Kelly said: “Love this. Get looked at like an alien when I pay cash (at) most places.”