Sort file:- Canterbury, July, 2020.

Page Updated:- Friday, 31 July, 2020.


Earliest 21 Sept 2013


Open 2019+

13 Rosemary Lane


01227 455164

Above photo kindly sent by Mark Hourahane.


Previously called the "Blind Dog" as well as other previous incarnations, this establishment has now opened as what is described as Canterbury's only gay bar.

The "Limes Lounge and Diner" is the brainchild of 51-year-old Tony Butcher, who sees only good times ahead.


From 23 March 2014, by Gerry Warren

Bosses at Limes Lounge in Canterbury threatened with arson as vicar offers to 'cure' them of their homosexuality.

Tony Butcher

The boss of Canterbury's only gay bar says a vicar offered to “cleanse” its customers and cure them of their homosexuality.

Tony Butcher said he was left flabbergasted when the clergyman popped into Limes Lounge in Rosemary Lane, which he claims has been hounded by homophobic opposition ever since it opened six months ago.

He said: “It was our first Sunday when in came this chap in his 30s wearing a dog collar who suggested we should come to his church where he could cleanse us.

Tony Butcher

Tony Butcher, a director of the city gay bar Limes Lounge

“I have no idea which church he was from and we just laughed it off. But it seems to have set the tone of the reaction to the venue which some people clearly don't like.

“We had one angry bloke threaten to burn us down and now are being harassed by the city council, who are threatening to withdraw our licence because of complaints about noise.”

Now Mr Butcher, who used to run the Girls and Boys nights at the former Studio 41, said: “We have tried everything to be good neighbours but just feel like we are constantly being hounded and targeted.

“It has got to the stage where I think it can only be because of what we are, and some people don't like it.”

But council assistant director Larissa Reed denied the authority was being anti-gay, saying it had a duty to investigate noise complaints.

Mr Butcher said: “The building was in a bit of a state when we took it over and I invested 50,000 in refurbishing it.

Tony says the bar has been targeted because of its clientele

“There have been three complaints about noise which we had done everything we can to address.

“I walk about the city and hear music blaring from pubs, but I would say we are one of the quietest and we never have any trouble.”

It is not the first time the city council has been accused of being anti-gay.

Previously, the authority came under fire from LGBT group Pride in Canterbury for not supporting gay activities in the district.

But council assistant director Larissa Reed said: “We absolutely refute any suggestion of homophobia on our part or that the council has an agenda against this premises.

"We simply have a duty to investigate noise complaints of this nature.

“It has got to the stage where I think it can only be because of what we are, and some people don't like it” - Tony Butcher

“The council has received three complaints from different residents regarding the Limes Lounge since October 2013 when the current landlord took over.

“The complaints all relate to noise outside and also loud music from inside the pub. All complainants have submitted evidence that indicates there are issues of noise at certain times.”

She added: “Our noise officer has been working hard with all parties concerned, including the landlord of the pub, to try and reach an amicable resolution, and this is continuing.

“We would also stress that prior to the current landlord taking over, complaints were also received in 2013 regarding similar issues with the previous landlord.”


From the By Alex Claridge, 29 July 2017.

Limes gay bar in Canterbury suffers abuse and dead pigeon after internet sting.

A city gay bar at the centre of an internet vigilante sting has been subjected to online abuse, threats to burn it down and even had a dead pigeon hurled through the door, says its owner.

Limes’ boss Toni Butcher is in fear for his staff’s and customers’ safety after it emerged last week that a barman had allegedly tried to lure a 14-year-old boy to the bar for sex – only to discover that he had been in contact with a paedophile hunting group.

The 37-year-old barman was confronted by members of the Internet Interceptors, who descended on the Rosemary Lane bar and uploaded five videos of the evening to Facebook.

Mr Butcher terminated the barman’s employment after he was arrested by police, but says that since then there have been threats of violence made to the premises.

On Thursday a dead pigeon was thrown through the front door.

“It had a broken neck with blood everywhere and was obviously killed for the purpose of throwing into the bar,” Mr Butcher said.

“We are being called paedophiles online, we’ve had people shouting through the door or saying that we should be closed down or even that the pub should be burned down.

“I’m not frightened any more. I’m now just angry.”

The Internet Interceptors have trapped dozens of men across the UK by posing as underage youngsters. Videos are then posted online and the police called.

Police have warned against vigilante groups ensnaring people by using fake profiles and officers attended Limes in the wake of the backlash against the pub.

Mr Butcher added: “The police are right behind us on this. They recognise that the attacks on us are homophobic and it’s a very dangerous situation that we’re in.

“But the police have been very good and they are supporting us especially in light of the fact that some people are saying we should all be killed.”

Police spokesman Scarlet Jones said: “We are investigating a report of threatening or offensive communications carried out on social media between 11.59pm on July, 25 and 1.15pm on July 26. “Officers have spoken to the informants and enquiries are continuing.”

They have also bailed Simon Burrin, 37, after he was arrested on suspicion of grooming. He is due back to police on August 9.



BUTCHER Tony 21/Sept/2013+


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