Pub owner offers to give free meals to people weighing over 25 stone
A pub owner has defended his offer to give free meals to people weighing more than 25 stone if they step on the scales first.
The George in Stockton, Teesside, is known for offering eating contests and owner Craig Harker has come up with a new pitch for larger customers.
On the pub's Facebook page, it says: "Being over 25 stone finally has its advantages.
"If you tip the scales at over 25 stone then YOU will be entitled to a FREE Meal at our pub.
"Reward the best eaters, don't judge them."
Mr Harker has already offered a 50pc contribution towards the headstone of any customer who dies while taking part in a food challenge, and a contest to see who can eat the most chicken nuggets in 10 minutes.
He said: "We are not Weight Watchers, people don't come here for something healthy, they come here for a massive meal.
"It's personal choice."
He said people taking up the offer must go on the scales simply to prove their weight, but it is not about public humiliation.
If they buy a drink they are then entitled to a free burger and chips or a parmo and chips.
If they want a second meal, they just have to buy another drink.
But health campaigners are unhappy with the offer.
Jane DeVille-Almond of the British Obesity Society told the Gazette newspaper website: "It's a sign of our times when people think it's okay to not take health seriously."
On the pub's Facebook page, reaction is mixed and some people have complained about the offer.
One said: "Feed the starving not the greedy."
But others who have successfully slimmed from under 25 stone are bemoaning their bad luck.
One man said: "Typical, I've just dropped from 29 stone down to 22 1/2 stone... now i have a decision to make... keep going or go back for a free meal."