Years of controversy surrounded Samuel Smith’s prior to latest pub incident (video)


(Yorkshire, UNITED KINGDOM) – This past weekend, The Mirror reported that Samuel Smith’s management closed down a pub during a New Year’s Eve party due to serving pints “too full” of beer.

Shortly after posting about the report, Lee Williams sent over a link to a program called, “Inside Out,” that aired on BBC in 2009. The program details the power that Samuel Smith’s has over the town of Tadcaster and features interviews from past employees that were fired and other locals that have had run-ins with the company. One man describes his experience with Samuel Smith as “ten years of hell.” Multiple interviewees lose their composure and break down during the report.

It doesn’t stop there.

The person who posted the video actually represents a forum for discussion around Samuel Smith Old Brewery. This is a forum where locals, employees and ex-employees can go to vent their frustrations about the brewery. And it is quite active.

Here is the description of the video and the forum as posted on the Youtube page

BBC’s Inside Out documentary – broadcasted 12th October, 2009 – in the Yorks and Links area. Gives just a very brief insight into the power of Sam Smiths brewery – and in particular how one of the two Director brothers – Humphrey W Smith – exercises his ‘Lord of the Manor’ type power, with apparently no regard for the hurt it may cause to many staff, customers, and literally, anyone who gets in his way. More information can be gleaned from our website: which is a moderated open forum for managers, staff and customers – and was set up in the absence of an official website – and to overcome communication problems, since the brewery has banned all their pubs from owning/ running websites – which were normally done to help support their clientèle, and the brewery’s business.

Ultimately, the website and its members, support the brewery and it’s produce, and Public Houses – but are very concerned about the shift in governing policy exercised by Humphrey Smith, which has seemed to cause a steady increase in problems for staff and customers alike! Mr Smith (who avoids publicity, and commentary at all times) has made his viewpoint very clear in a circular (which we have seen an original) with regards to his customers – the is not bothered or concerned about what they may like or dislike. It is alleged that he has suggested; that as long as the beer is good, and the price is cheap, he will always have customers – dispite however long it takes to get served, or what the pub and surroundings is like, or has to offer. A very big departure from the usual market concerns for customers from his competition.

Samuel Smith’s beers are imported into the U.S.A. by Merchant du Vin.

A brewery spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

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3 thoughts on “Years of controversy surrounded Samuel Smith’s prior to latest pub incident (video)

  1. Humphrey Smith , owns so much , yet he has little or nothing to commend himself .

  2. I have actually met this man. He is strange for sure. A very sorry insular figure. He treats his staff like dirt. He is some sort of sociopath.

    He inherited the brewery and has no business acumen. When talking to one of the area managers of one of the big professional breweries, one started to laugh when his name was mentioned. In the business he regarded as a crank and they known of his antics. The area rep told me “if he worked for us, he would be sacked after about a year, as he hasn’t much of a clue. The value of Sam Smiths is in the land it owns. He doesn’t have to pay rent so can ride the bad times even being hopelessly inefficient with dreary pubs. The only thing going for the brewery is that the beer is cheap, but not the wine which is overpriced”.

    This man needs to get professional mangers in and the brewery should have in ingrained ethos like Marks and Spencers, then the brewery will make even more money. But is best the whole brewery goes belly up and disappears. History like Sam Smiths this country needs to bury.

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