I recently had the misfortune of a poor review on the dreaded Trip Advisor. As some of you will know it took me many weeks to assure the loons that I am indeed the business owner here at the Plough and therefore entitled to defend my business. For those that use this awful ‘service’ can I point out that I have told them, repeatedly, to remove the details of dining and also the charming review posted in March of this year.
The March review is from a couple who ‘eat here every week’ and are full of praise for the food and the staff. I don’t think that we will hear any more reviews from this couple for a while, given their apparent lack of any sense of direction they are probably still wandering around the island.
The review that bit me was one from a couple who said that they ‘actively sought out local pubs’ before complaining that this was indeed a ‘locals’ pub and they therefore felt unwelcome. I have added a carefully worded response to their comment but it remains a thorny subject for me given that the Plough is not only a very friendly pub but the island itself is incredibly friendly. I can only imagine that this reviewer is used to swingers clubs and was simply upset not to be offered an alternative bed for the night!
Over the last two nights this ‘unfriendly’ establishment has had a regular visitor who is staying on the island for four nights. The gentlemen in question is 69-70 years of age and there is a reason why I can be that accurate. You see, as a locals only type of pub, we speak to our customers and this gentleman has an excellent (and inspiring) back story. Having been the victim of a surprise sixtieth birthday he is spending his seventieth on the island. He has just packed up from London and decamped to Shanklin without telling anyone where he is going so as to avoid a repeat of the last change of decade. I couldn’t put it better than the man himself when he said ‘they are lovely people and it was genuinely nice of them but it is just not for me’.
I brought the guy a pint last night out of respect for such a great story and indeed such a great idea. The other reason, as I explained, was that I can’t shift the idea of a pub somewhere in darkness waiting for David and repeatedly jumping out and shouting “SURPRISE” followed by a muttering of “oh sorry Rob we we thought you were Dave”. Having recounted the story to one of my locals he to purchased a pint for our new found legend and then proceeded to spend an hour or so discussing life with him. This is why I am in this trade and this is what makes the Plough so great, sure we have some challenges still to deal with (and probably always will) but its a great little pub where people enjoy themselves and that will do for me.