Volstead bar U-turn on baby ban

ANNA PEARSON
Last updated 08:47 31/12/2013
Rebecca and Tim Lord
CHARLOTTE SQUIRE/ Fairfax NZ
DISAPPOINTED: Rebecca and Tim Lord with their 7-month-old baby Albin. They were asked to leave the Volstead Trading Company last week because the bar does not allow babies on its premises. 

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The new owners of the Volstead Trading Company have lifted their bar's baby-ban and offered a free beer and burrito to parents turned away last week.

The move was in response to an article The Press Should babies be allowed in bars? and an online poll which saw about 70 per cent of more than 560 voters say, ''No''.

It came after Volstead manager Ned Bartlett turned Tim Lord, 32, and his 7-month-old baby, Albin, away from the Riccarton Rd bar last week. It was a quiet early evening and Lord said he thought Bartlett was joking when he said the bar had "a strict under-18 policy".

Last night, the new owners of the Volstead explained on Facebook that the bar's previous owner had opted to prohibit entry to under-18s and Bartlett "was simply maintaining the status quo".

"As new owners, we had not discussed, nor considered, this issue until now."

The Facebook post said while the majority of the bar's patrons appeared to support the previous owner's policy.

"However, as parents ourselves, we support a commonsense approach and do not believe entry to under-18s should be prohibited simply as a matter of course.

''Accordingly, in an attempt to strike an appropriate balance so that everyone can enjoy our great range of local and international craft beers and delicious Mexican food, Volstead will allow under-18s entry into the bar with their parent or legal guardian up to 6pm daily,'' the post said.

''We would also like to take this opportunity to apologise to the Lords for their previous experience and extend an invitation to come along to Volstead with little Albin and enjoy a lunchtime beer and burrito on us.''

The law says underagers, including babies, are allowed in bars with supervised designations but bar owners can choose who it allowed onto their premises.

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