PUB bosses booted out a group of cyclists – because their body odour was putting off other customers.

The owners of the picturesque Lamb Inn in the New Forest told the riders to get on their bikes after drinkers complained about the smell.

The 13 friends, who had only pedalled about six miles to Nomansland from Cadnam, say they have never been so insulted.

They claim the pub was virtually empty anyway.

But owner Zara Mason described the smell as “disgusting”.

She said: “I have got evidence of it, they can come and speak to customers. It was disgusting.

“We would never offend anybody, but we’re open from 11am to 11pm on Saturday, we have got regulars and other general public to think about.

“Especially in times of need we don’t ask people to leave. It was 11am, we weren’t that busy, it just shows you how bad they did smell.”

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Mrs Mason said that they were fully booked for lunch and had already received complaints from customers and the bar staff but had only politely asked the cyclists to sit outside.

She added that cyclists were always welcome and the pub even filled up water bottles for free.

The 13-strong group, who are aged between their mid-40s and mid-60s, all belong to the Lordshill Road Runners Club in Southampton.

They had been cycling half an hour on Saturday in temperatures of around 16C (61F) when they stopped off for refreshments, but said they had barely taken a sip of their coffees and beers when the restaurant manager told them to leave.

One of the cyclists, medical secretary Janet Burnage, 54, of Romsey, said the group were angry and had vowed never to use the pub again.

She said: “We’d never been so insulted in our lives. I think in this day and age, especially when pubs are closing down all over the place and they’re trying to keep business, they’re going the wrong way about it. We won’t be recommending people to go there.

“The restaurant manager came over to us and said ‘I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but there is a bit of a body odour and would you mind leaving’.”

Fellow cyclist John McGarry, 59, a retired accountant from Colden Common, added: “My only reaction was stunned amazement – I have run enough marathons over the years to recognise when I am sweaty and smelly, but even then no one has ever complained.”