JD Wetherspoon extends PR agency relationship to 35 years

JD Wetherspoon has reappointed Eddie Gershon Media Relations to handle its PR for a further five years, meaning the agency will have represented the pub chain for 35 years when the new contract ends.

(Picture: Leon Neal/AFP via Getty Images)
(Picture: Leon Neal/AFP via Getty Images)

The agency, led by the eponymous Gershon, has undertaken all JD Wetherspoon’s PR, including financial PR and crisis management, since 1990.

In addition, it runs the company’s press office and produces eight Wetherspoon News magazines annually.

JD Wetherspoon operates 873 pubs and 52 hotels in the UK and Ireland, employing more than 43,000 staff.

Arguably the most high-profile pub chain in the UK, it is frequently in the headlines, often on based on the comments of its outspoken chairman Tim Martin, who is one of the best-known Brexit-supporting business leaders.

Martin received criticism in March when he said JD Wetherspoon's staff would not be paid until the furlough scheme began, a decision that was later reversed.

The backlash was compounded after the widely reported leaking of a video to staff in which he suggested employees could take jobs at Tesco while their pubs were closed due to coronavirus restrictions, and when he told Sky News shortly before the first lockdown in March that "there's been hardly any transmission of the virus within pubs".

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