Edinburgh Fringe star banned from venue

Nina Snowball was banned from the Fringe venue she had helped promote

A PLUCKY pooch was refused entry to one of Edinburgh’s Fringe venues despite being one of the stars in their advertising campaign a few years ago.

Nina Snowball was paraded across the pages of Fringe magazine in 2004, as well as appearing on flyers and an eight-foot billboard.

But the poor pug was denied entry on Friday night at the new Assembly Venue on George Street due to their strict “no dogs allowed” policy.

Nina’s owner, Don Dixon, from Haddington said he hadn’t named dropped Nina but said the policy was “ridiculous”.

The 45-year-old pet shop owner said: “I’ve been to plenty of Festival venues that are dog friendly, but we were stopped by the doorman who said it was a council policy, then mumbled something about public safety and allergies.

“We had all gone for a night out, we were polite and suited and I thought it was ridiculous.

“Nina can be a diva but she’s 11-years-old now, very quiet, tiny, partially blind and deaf and very well behaved.

“They said I could stand with my drink and dog on the pavement, which I pointed out could contravene alcohol consumption rules.

“I didn’t tell them that Nina was a famous Fringe dog – I don’t name-drop.”

He added that he hopes the Assembly venue would reconsider its policy.

He said: “People love pugs, they adore them and they always want to speak to Nina.

“She’s not causing any harm at all, and she did her bit for the Fringe. Now her pug face is even sadder than usual.

“The Festival is a family place and people should be able to bring children and dogs without this needles bureaucracy.

“The Udderbelly is fine with letting dogs in. I’ll be going there from now on.”

Michael Harris, programme manager and producer at the Assembly, joked that the dog wasn’t allowed in because she “was very drunk and abusive.”

He added that there was a “no dogs” policy, except for guide dogs.