Watford publicans are “incensed” by the behaviour of teenage mobs who visit their pubs after dancing at local beat clubs. And this week they claimed that the youths, some “high” with drugs, run wild when they enter the bar.

Today a group of licensees in the St Albans Road area are to put their complaints to Watford Borough councillor William Price (Queen’s Ward) at a private meeting.

Councillor Price told an Observer reporter: “The publicans in the area are upset and incensed by the nuisance of youths from a local hall. I do know it has caused a considerable amount of embarrassment to them.

“They have asked me to try to contact the trustees of the hall and see if it would be possible to provide a soft drink bar on the premises so youngsters won’t have to leave the dance and visit local pubs during the interval.”

One of the publicans attending the protest meeting is 66-year-old Mr Victor Ashby, licensee of the White Lion, in St Albans Road, Watford.

Mr Ashby claims he has been threatened with a knife and had black and red paint splattered across his bar door because he refused to serve a group of youths. He has also had to call in the police twice to remove “undesirables”.

Said Mr Ashby: “You’ve got to be a fighting man to live round here nowadays. We just can’t stand it. Half the elderly folk are afraid to come in on a Saturday now because of what might happen.

“It’s not drink they’ve had. They’re all glassy eyed and jumping about, fighting and God knows what. They are a menace and a curse. What’s more the girls are as bad as the boys.”

[From the Watford Observer of March 10, 1967]

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