Taking Action ... Members of the public vs the John Snow

Prepared: Protesters gather
Prepared: Protesters gather

Protesters: Members of the public
Target: John Snow pub, London
Location: Outside the John Snow pub
Date: 15 and 21 April

The lowdown

Two protests were held at the John Snow pub in Soho following the alleged ejection of two men for kissing. First there was the Gay Kiss-In, which saw about 300 kissing protesters gathered outside the pub. The demonstration, organised through Facebook by Paul Shetler, a senior director at an IT firm, had been intended to take place inside the pub, but its doors were locked after news of the kiss-in broke. A further protest was organised for both gay and straight people on 21 April.

Why the protests?

The kiss-in followed the news that a woman claiming to be the landlady ejected Jonathan Williams and James Bull for kissing in the pub, accusing them of being 'obscene'. The protests were backed by London Mayor Boris Johnson and Conservative MP and international development minister Alan Duncan.

How did the John Snow pub respond?

The pub and Samuel Smith's brewery, which owns it, have not commented. When The Guardian called the pub, a woman initially put the phone down. On a second call, she said: 'Can you just stop calling this number please, or we'll have you done for harassment.'

How did the media cover it?

The news of both the alleged ejection and the protest was covered widely in the national and international media. The coverage was largely sympathetic towards the protesters.

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