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Bah humbug - Gin shop in Christmas city bans modern festive hits

(Below is the press release that led to the York Gin shop appearing in most national newspapers, the BBC World service and in the news all over the world.)

A gin shop in one of Britain’s most Christmassy cities has banned modern Christmas songs.

Shop manager - Sandie Tanner-Smith, Directors Pete McNichol, Paul Crossman, Emma Godivala - Photographer:  Director Harry Cooke.

The York Gin shop has banned Mariah Carey, Wizzard, Slade, Wham! and even Cliff Richard, Shaky and The Wombles.

Bosses say they’re doing it to help staff morale and customer satisfaction - and because modern songs sound weird in their 16th Century Tudor building.

Sandie Tanner-Smith, York Gin shop manger, Alex Mather & Jo Hird, shop staff & cast from Scrooge The Musical playing at York Opera House, 26 Nov-1 Dec 2019

York was voted the UK's Most Festive City in 2017.

York Gin Co-Director Emma Godivala said: “We do love Christmas, but we want our gin shop to be a cheese-free zone. 

“We’ve tested lots of songs to see which sound okay and which sound weird. And there’s a cut-off in the 1960s. Anything after that has been banned.

“Our lovely team are happy with the decision - they say lots of other shop staff are already going stir crazy with the same Christmas hits being played on a loop.

“That said, if Mariah appeared in the shop, we might just overturn the ban for a while and play All I Want For Christmas Is You.”

The York Gin shop has over 200 songs on its playlist including all the  classic Christmas carols, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald - and music from Christmas ballets like The Nutcracker.

Shop manager Sandie Tanner-Smith said: “We’re confident we’ll have the happiest staff and customers around - our playlist is big enough to make sure no-one hears the same Christmas song more than twice in a week. Offering free samples of our award-winning gins always makes for happy customers too!”

York Gin shop manager Sandie Tanner-Smith, York Gin co-founders Emma Godivala (Centre) & Paul Crossman (holding the Gin Lane sign)
Second row far left: York Gin co-founder Pete McNichol with York Gin staff & cast from Scrooge The Musical, playing at York Opera House, 26 Nov-1 Dec

York Gin shop in the National press

Well that escalated quickly! York Mix & York Press covered the York Gin shop story on Friday 8th November 2019 - and it was quickly followed in the Guardian, Metro, Yorkshire Post, Mail Online, Daily Star & Irish national papers. Some great publicity for our beautiful city of York in the festive season!

York Mix Story - York shop bans Christmas pop hits – because they ‘sound weird

York Press Story - York shop bans modern Christmas songs - because they 'sound weird'

York Gin in the Guardian - York shop bans cheesy Christmas music for sake of staff

York Gin in the Metro - Shop bans Christmas song playlist to stop staff going insane

York Gin in the Mail online -  Gin Shop bans cheesy Xmas songs to boost staff morale

York Gin in iNews - Gin shop owner bans 'cheesy' Christmas songs because they drive customers 'stir crazy'

York Gin in the the Metro - York Gin Shop bans christmas song playlist to stop staff going insane

York Gin in the Daily Star - All I want for Christmas is 'no cheese' – Brit shop owner bans classic Xmas hits

The York Gin Directors L-R Paul Crossman, Emma Godivala, Harry Cooke & Pete McNichol

York Gin is at the Christmas Market from 16 November 2019 to 22 December 2019, and 7 days a week at 12 Pavement, York, YO1 9UP

Scrooge the Musical - including many of the wonderful York Gin team plays at the Opera House, York 26 November - 1 December - info & tickets