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Pub landlord slammed after ‘vile joke’ over ‘maggot infested kids’

A pub landlord has been slammed online after he offered "starving, maggot infested, lice riddled kids," a jam sandwich workshop as a joke.

Richard Dawson, owner of The Cricketers Arms in Baildon, near Bradford, jokingly offered children a free jam sandwich workshop.

He made the joke in amid government criticism for refusing to fund free school meals over the half-term period.

The Facebook post, which has now been deleted, offered the workshop to "starving, maggot infested, lice riddled kids," which many people took offence too.

Commenting on the Facebook post, mum and former BBC Look North presenter Christa Ackroyd, described it the joke as "vile" and said she had never seen anything that had left her so "sickened."

She said: "However you read this it is not funny. It can never be a joke. It is vile.

"I hope everyone treats you with the same disrespect you have shown to others.

"I have never seen a post (joke or otherwise) that leaves me as sickened."

Another added: "Disgusting! Must have a sick sense of humour as not one word of this was funny.

"Hmm, that’s just awful. I can see the tumbleweed blowing across social media already."

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Mr Dawson tried to defend the post as a joke, comparing it to comic Jimmy Carr, but he has since taken down the post.

He said: "Jimmy Carr says horrendous things and gets away with it.

"Bad taste, I don't know, there's a lot of emotions at the moment.

"People joke about worse things."

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A spokesman reportedly told MailOnline he initially said he wouldn't remove it "because he wasn't going to be bullied into backing down."

He said: "He wasn't going to delete it yesterday because he wasn't willing to be bullied into backing down.

"There's been a full day of uproar to remove it. People have said what they think of it and Richard wants to draw a line under it."

Mr Dawson later posted a separate post and said he felt as though "the poor are being stigmatised and their supposed needs been used for political capital."

He added: "Many felt it wasn't really the Government's job to be feeding school children during the holidays, it seemed to me not wishing to do so was a reasonably valid point of view to hold."

Daily Star Online has approached Mr Dawson and the Cricketers Arms in Basildon for comment.

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