The landlord of a Staffordshire pub linked to an outbreak of coronavirus has said he was “simply not strong enough” in enforcing government rules.
Custodio Pinto, of the Crown and Anchor in Stone, said he regretted being “complacent” in enforcing the regulations with customers.
Twenty-two people linked to the pub tested positive for Covid-19.
About 1,000 people were tested after health officials set up mobile units in the area.
Staffordshire Police said it visited the site on 18 and 19 July following social distancing concerns.
In a message on Facebook, Mr Pinto said he wanted to express his “deepest regret for all the anguish, disruption and sadness” following what happened.
“On July 18, I accept that I was simply not strong enough in enforcing the Government’s COVID-19 secure rules, despite detailed preparation according to their guidelines,” he said.
He added that he now understood “the importance of maintaining supervised control” of the rules.
Traders said custom in the town “fell like a stone” following the outbreak.
Mr Pinto said he “never intentionally set out to create any damage or disruption to the community of Stone” and was “prepared to do whatever it takes to rectify that”.