Norwich pub closes after £3,000 fine for showing football matches

The Pig and Whistle. Picture: Denise Bradley

The Pig and Whistle. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Archant 2013

A Norwich pub has shut down after the licence holder was convicted of showing football matches illegally.

Simon Carpenter, of the Pig & Whistle Pub on All Saints Green, was convicted of three counts of fraud on March 2 at Norwich magistrates court.

He was fined £3,382.56 and ordered to pay full prosecution costs to the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT), which amounted to £1,937.54.

Mr Carpenter admitted illegally broadcasting Sky Sports in the city centre pub on August 10 and 30 and September 26 2015.

The pub ceased trading on Saturday March 5.

The Pig & Whistle had been run by husband and wife team Simon and Claire Carpenter for the last three years and was marketed as the only sports bar in the city centre.

The pub had been a bar/bistro called The Westlegate when the couple took it over in 2013, but before that had a long history under its current name.

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Their website advertised that 'through the use of our specialist system we are able to show any Premier League match that is played, on any day of the week'.

The prosecuting manager at FACT, Stephen Gerrard, said the conviction of Mr Carpenter was 'part of a series of ongoing prosecutions and investigations nationwide' into pubs showing sports programmes without paying for a commercial licence.

'It's a nationwide problem,' said Mr Gerrard.

Mr Carpenter was unavailable for comment.

Virtuoso Craft Brewpub, in Kett's Hill, Norwich, formerly Kett's Tavern, was fined in November for broadcasting Premier League football without authorisation.

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