A PUB landlord who is trying to reclaim old debts has started naming and shaming those who owe him money.
Kevin Murphy – who owns Murphy’s in Regent Street – received an £8,000 tax bill which he is unable to pay.
In a bid to claw back the cash he posted a 10ft sign in his window threatening to name the cash-strapped punters and struggling fellow landlords he had leant money to.
And his threats seem to have worked, as he has so far received around £1,000 and has even arranged payment plans with some of his debtors.
But the names of some of the people who still owe him have started going up outside his pub – even though legally this could be a problem for the 51-year-old landlord.
Kevin – who runs the pub with daughter Lisa – told the Observer: “The response to my sign has been fantastic. I am getting lots of historical debts back and payment plans started for some of the larger ones.
“I have named a few people with more going up soon. Some of the people I have named have gone a bit moody but it has been well received.
“I have been the landlord here for 22 years and during that time I’ve lent people £10 here, £20 there and £100 when they needed it. I lent one landlord £1,500 seven years ago, that was the highest amount.
“People see me as a soft touch and they take advantage of that. Some of them have got no intention of paying, but the taxman is asking me for money, so I need the cash I’m owed urgently.
“You don’t go into Tesco and say to the person on the till ‘I’m a bit skint right now, I’ll pay you tomorrow.’ These were loans not gifts.”
It is not the first time he has used the premises to name and shame – two years ago he placed a board outside urging customers not to fly with Easyjet after £1,000 went missing from one of his bags on a flight.
But his latest high profile venture does appear to be working with a number of those who have borrowed cash starting to repay the landlord.
Kevin warned: “If I don’t get paid those names are going up and they won’t come down until they’ve settled up.”