A pub landlord who used the Track and Trace details to send “creepy” messages, has said he is sorry.
James Karran, owner of St Canna’s Alehouse in Cardiff apologised for “letting down the community” with his ‘creepy’ conduct towards a woman who visited his pub last month.
On November 19 at 8:19 pm, he messaged the woman: “Just so you know you've got a super pretty face so you're allowed to not wear a mask at the bar. Everyone else must wear one."
The woman’s angry partner took to Facebook to slam the owner for breaching GDPR and making her feel uncomfortable.
His post read:: "St. Canna's Ale House thanks for deleting my review on your page. Last night my partner was a victim of a GDPR breach.
"She went into this establishment, filled out the Track and Trace without thinking anything of it. She proceeded to order a drink at the bar, but the barman/owner James told her to remove the mask as he couldn’t hear her apparently, but only for this man to see what she looked like. Then [he] took her details from the Track and Trace sheet and messaged her illegally.
"My partner then left the establishment as soon as she had this creepy text from the owner/manager."
The man went on to respond to Mr Karran’s message, accusing him of "absolutely awful behaviour" and an illegal data breach.
The landlord replied: "My profound apologies. No excuse, but I've [sic] so sorry for doing this to you and your girlfriend. I promise this will not happen again but can I please ask if you won't take it further. I'm so so sorry."
The post sparked heavy criticism of St Canna's on social media but the pub did not issue a statement on the incident until December 10, despite being approached for comment by Wales Online.
Issuing a statement on Twitter, they said: "St Canna's has always been known as a safe place to be, but recently that reputation has become tarnished. To grow and improve for the future we will be launching a series of positive initiatives aimed at re-establishing our reputation for safety and welcome to all.
"These will include: becoming accredited with the Good Night Out Campaign; implementing a 'safer spaces' policy; overhauling our business practices around the management and prevention of Covid; supporting the charity Women's Aid throughout 2022, including initially donating one whole Saturday night's takings.
"We cannot change the past but we hope people will see the actions we have taken, and continue to support this small business as it plays its role in the local community."
But the statement prompted a further backlash, with users stating they don’t believe his apology is sincere or that he has taken responsibility.
The statement prompted a backlash on Twitter, with comments accusing Mr Karran of failing to take responsibility for his actions or issue an apology.
Reporters first approached Mr Karran for comment on November 30. When we approached the landlord again on Friday, he apologised for his conduct.
He said: "I am so sorry for what has happened. I have apologised to the individual concerned, and I am sorry for letting down the community of St Canna’s.
"As I said in my post this morning: we cannot change the past. I wish I could. But people will hopefully see the positive steps we are taking. It does not correct what has happened, but we want to make a positive difference to our local community.”
The partner of the customer who received the message told WalesOnline they did not wish to comment beyond the social media post which drew attention to the incident.
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