Britain’s first Chick-fil-A restaurant will close down after pressure was put on their landlords by LGBT activists to not renew their lease after their 6 month trial period.
Chick-fil-A opened their first British location in the Oracle shopping centre in Reading last Thursday, in a move welcomed by many, but opposed by some, due to Chick-fil-A’s Christian values.
The local LGBT organisation, Reading Pride, said they were “staunchly opposed” to the new store, and announced a protest against the store:
The chain’s ethos and moral stance goes completely against our values, and that of the UK as we are a progressive country that has legalised same sex marriage for some years, and continues to strive towards equality. We have put our issue to the Chick-fil-A chain, and have yet to receive their response. We respect everyone’s freedom to eat where they choose, however, we ask the LGBT+ community (including allies) to boycott the chain in Reading.
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On Friday, a spokesman for the Oracle shopping centre confirmed they would not grant Chick-fil-A an extension on their lease after their 6 month trial period ran out:
At the Oracle, we offer an inclusive space where everyone is welcome. We always look to introduce new concepts for our customers, however, we have decided on this occasion that the right thing to do is to only allow Chick-Fil-A to trade with us for the initial six month pilot period, and not to extend the lease any further.
However, a spokesman for Chick-fil-A claimed that the plan was always to have a short trial period at the store, and denied the claims of homophobia and racism:
Chick-fil-A is always evaluating potential new locations in the hope of serving customers great food and award winning service.This six month pilot licensed location was part of our exploration in international markets… Our giving has always focused on youth and education. We have never donated with the purpose of supporting a social or political agenda. There are 145,000 people – black, white; gay, straight; Christian, non-Christian – who represent Chick-fil-A.
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In a post to Facebook, Reading Pride applauded Oracle’s decision, but said that “as the restaurant will be profiting from unsuspecting patrons,” the protest would still go on, in order to “advise [customers] where their money could go.”
This is not the first time that a Chick-fil-A location has been subject to left-wing protests. Antifa activists threatened to throw bricks through the windows of a restaurant to open in northern Wisconsin, and the opening of the first store in Toronto saw dozens turn out to protest against supposed “hate and homophobia,” carrying signs such as “cluck off!”
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Ironically, profits for the fast-food chain have doubled since such protests began, a complete reversal of the “get woke, go broke” phenomenon.