The Linlithgow and Linlithgow Bridge Community Council deeply regret the manner in which Greene King has taken the decision to change the name of ‘The Black Bitch’ pub to a name that Greene King, as owner, considers less offensive. Greene King will now be well aware of the upset in Linlithgow that its proposed change has caused in the Community.
It is clear to all that there is very substantial local support for retaining the current name. Nevertheless, the Community Council accepts that there is also some local support for a change of name. However, we would like it to be recognised that the name The Black Bitch has no racial implication whatsoever when understood alongside the context of Linlithgow’s treasured legend.
Had the approach from Greene King shown the tact that the Community Council would expect from an organisation of the scale and standing of Greene King, when dealing with what was always going to be a very sensitive issue, the current distress in the community might well have been avoided.
Whatever the outcome related to the naming of the pub, the Community Council upholds the right of Linlithgow to recognise its traditional heritage as embodied in the Black Bitch icon, now represented by the Black Bitch statue at the Vennel and in other insignia.