Swindon pub illustrates town with pictures of Ireland and Australia

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

Not in Swindon: a new Woodhouse & Hall pub has drawn social media criticism after using incorrect images (image: JoachimKohlerBremen, Wikimedia)
Not in Swindon: a new Woodhouse & Hall pub has drawn social media criticism after using incorrect images (image: JoachimKohlerBremen, Wikimedia)

Related tags: Wiltshire

Wiltshire residents noticed something amiss about imagery used to promote a new pub in Wichelstowe, Swindon – the pictures of the town were taken in Ireland, Germany and Australia.

On the Hall & Woodhouse at Wichelstowe pub website, an image of the county’s historic manor house Lydiard Park was actually a picture of stately home Muckross House in Killarney, Ireland.

People noticed that images on a ‘local attractions’ website page for the newly opened canalside venue did not match the actual landmarks.

These included an image of a German steam engine to represent the Steam Museum about the Great Western Railway and an image of a Melbourne shopping mall, which was labelled as the Swindon Designer Outlet.

Wiltshire locals noticed this wasn't Lydiard House pictured (image: Alex Pollock)
Wiltshire locals noticed this wasn't Lydiard House pictured (image: Alex Pollock)

Positive feedback

One Swindon resident tweeted the choice was “very lazy” and “a tad insulting to the region”.

Hall & Woodhouse marketing manager James Kirkham said the brewery was focused on welcoming customers in the busy initial launch period, after the site opened on Friday 1 February.

He continued: “It was always our plan to update the images on our website after opening, and we will be completing these updates in due course.

“Thank you to our guests and the local community for supporting us over the launch weekend, despite the snow and freezing temperatures.

“We are proud to have received positive feedback since the opening and look forward to welcoming our guests in the future.”

The images have now been replaced on the website.

Alex Pollock, managing director at social media agency SocMedSup, said he had given the brewery advice and some images of the town, after pointing out the original pictures on Twitter.

Beyond the pale

Angela Atkinson, author of local history book Secret Swindon​ told newspaper This Is Wiltshire​ she felt there had been no effort put into the image sourcing.

She said: “They’ve gone to great lengths to install a pub that recognises and celebrates the canal heritage, so why ruin it all with a lazy, sloppy website?

“Whoever built that only needed to spend five minutes on Google to find dozens of places they could have sourced actual photos of what’s on that website.

“It’s not like suitable images are hard to come by. I think, as one of the others on Twitter observed, to use a stock image of a German locomotive for a webpage featuring a town that built the GWR is beyond the pale.”

Hall & Woodhouse operates more than 250 public houses in the south of England. Under the title Badger Brewery, it brews the Legendary Tangle Foot and Badger Best Bitter.

Related topics: Marketing

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