#itsgoodtotalk – Wrexham gastro pub calls time on mobile phones

General Manager Mark Finley and Restaurant Manageress Jade Darlington of The Fat Boar in Wrexham, North Wales.

A popular Wrexham gastro pub is calling time on mobile phones for one night a week in a bid to encourage people to chat without any distractions.

Customers at The Fat Boar pub and restaurant in Wrexham will receive 25 per cent off their food bill if they are willing to hand in their mobile phones at the door and enjoy an evening without being tempted to constantly check out social media or any other alluring apps.

The Mobile Free Monday idea was the brainchild of Fat Boar Director Rich Watkin and is being supported by his team in Wrexham including General Manager Mark Finley and Restaurant Manageress Jade Darlington.

General Manager Mark Finley and Restaurant Manageress Jade Darlington of The Fat Boar in Wrexham, North Wales.

It is currently on trial at The Fat Boar’s Wrexham pub and if successful, will be rolled out to their Mold eaterie on Chester Street too.

The idea prompted an instant and positive reaction on social media with more than 100 comments posted within the first hour with many customers challenging one another to give it a go.

A video later posted on The Fat Boar’s Facebook page, explaining how customers’ mobile phones would be safely locked away in cash boxes on their tables with staff looking after the keys, prompted a similar enthusiastic response.

Close to 3,000 people viewed the video within 24 hours and it has reached close to 92,000 with many others throwing down the gauntlet to family and friends to give it a try.

 Rich said: “I am the first to admit that I am constantly glued to my mobile phone. We all have busy lives and they can be a fantastic way to keep in touch with everything we need to run our hectic schedules.

“But I couldn’t help but think it would be nice to encourage some of our loyal customers to make the most of an evening out with us and escape from all the constant ‘bing bing’ of information which these little devices throw at us.

“We strive to provide a vibrant, fun and engaging atmosphere at both our pubs. We often have live music on, we have a delicious menu to choose from and a great range of real ales, wines, speciality gins and cocktails which means there is everything here necessary for a great night out.

“Mobiles can often be a real distraction and stop us from just sitting among family and friends and simply having a good conversation and that’s why I came up with the idea.”

Restaurant Manageress Jade Darlington agreed and added: “We all see people sitting together at tables, waiting for their food without talking and looking at their phones.

“I think we all feel a certain amount of pressure to be constantly checking emails, social media, texts and all the other messaging on our phones.

“But if we can do something to encourage people to put their phones down and concentrate solely on one another and the fun night out they are having with us, then I think that’s a really positive thing.”

Any customer who is willing to change the tone of their evening and relinquish their mobile phone will simply agree to lock their phones away in the cash boxes on the table until they are ready to go home.

 Tables must be booked in advance to take advantage of the Mobile Free Monday. For more information, call The Fat Boar Wrexham on 01978 354201 or go to www.fatboarwrecsam.co.uk Facebook is @TheFatBoarWrecsam. Twitter is @TheFatBoarWXM