Top businessman hits out at rumours and lies

Respected Pendle businessman Kevin Berkins is calling for an end to months of ugly rumours and lies surrounding himself and one of his restaurants, the Eagle at Barrow.

Friday, 15th October 2010, 9:41 am

He says ridiculous stories – including allegations that he had been arrested by the police on serious charges – amount to nothing more than “tittle-tattle.”

Now Lancashire Police have stepped in and issued a statement saying Mr Berkins has never been arrested, nor has his restaurant been under suspicion or surveillance.

“These rumours, lies, allegations, accusations and fabricated stories are complete rubbish,” said Mr Berkins, who also runs the Fence Gate Inn, Fence. “One person even said they’d read about my arrest in a newspaper. What newspaper?”

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He says the rumours began around five months ago. More recently word began to spread that Mr Berkins had been questioned by the police and cautioned. Some stories went further, alleging he had even been arrested.

“In the beginning I dismissed the rumours as just plain daft - I even laughed at first. But this has now been going on for months. It even seems orchestrated for whatever reason,” he added.

Mr Berkins says he now feels compelled to speak out to protect his reputation.

“I’ve not been interviewed by the local bobbies, divisional police, MI5, Interpol or anybody – I’ve not even had a speeding ticket lately,” he said.

Fictional

“I’m still trading and walking the streets. Scrutiny of personal data and public records will bear no fruit because all the allegations are without foundation and purely fictional.”

Having run the Fence Gate Inn since 1982, Kevin Berkins opened the Eagle at Barrow in December, 2008. It quickly became established as one of the top places to dine out in the Ribble Valley.

“I’ve worked hard and I won’t allow these rumours to tarnish my good name. The Eagle at Barrow is a family restaurant where you can eat, drink and relax. When it opened I said I was very proud of what we’d achieved here and I still am,” he said.

“I have no case to answer and anyone who repeats these ugly rumours should be ashamed of themselves.”

Insp. Chris Saville from Clitheroe police said: “I can confirm that Mr Berkins is not, and never has been, the subject of any investigation by Lancashire Constabulary in respect of these allegations.”