Local Pub News

CORNISH PUB NEWS

Pub Changes

 

Antony – Carew Arms

Falmouth – Chain Locker

Falmouth – Wodehouse Arms

Fowey – Galleon

Gulval – Coldstreamer Inn

Illogan Highway - Railway

Newquay – Cribbar

Redruth – Mount Ambrose Inn

St Austell – Western Inn

St Erth – Star Inn

Twowatersfoot – Halfway House

Wendron – New Inn

 

 

 

New Inn, Wendron (right)

 

Two long-term Good Beer Guide listed pubs have lost their licensees, the New Inn at Wendron, and the Galleon in Fowey.  Nigel at the New Inn originally said he would stay for 10 years before moving on; in the event, he did 12 years’ hard labour, together with his wife and daughter who mainly took on the food side of the operation.  We wish them well in their next venture.  Meanwhile the new owners have moved in and reopened the pub after a short closedown to sort themselves out, and reports say that it seems to be pretty much business as usual, at least with the beer. Four real ales, being Tribute, Betty Stogs, Hops ‘n Honey, and a guest beer were spotted during an early visit.

In the far east near Torpoint, the Ring O’Bells at Antony has quietly established a new presence, after sale and extensive refit, now renamed the Carew Arms.  Styling itself as a gastropub, it sells two real ales, one of which is Tribute (whose malting barley is grown on their own farm), the other of which varies but is usually from a Cornish microbrewery such as Harbour.  They also offer up to 50 different mostly Cornish, bottled brews. The pub hosts a combined village shop and café in the former skittle alley.

More recent re-openings, again after refurbishment work, are the Cribbar in Newquay (formerly a Wetherspoons, now owned by pub chain Stonegate), and the Western Inn in St Austell.  The Mount Ambrose Inn at Redruth, bought from St Austell Brewery last autumn by Keltek Brewery and closed since, has recently reopened (7 May).  We await initial reports.  The Railway Inn at Illogan Highway, similarly closed after sale to Keltek, is still awaiting new tenants.  Finally, Mark Graham , landlord of previous branch Pub of the Year the Star Inn at Vogue, has taken on a second Punch Taverns pub, the Star Inn at St Erth.

Pub Closures

We have also seen two sudden closures.  In the east of the county, the Halfway House beside the A38 at Twowatersfoot (between Bodmin and Liskeard) closed abruptly in mid-April.  According to the owners, it has lost around half its passing trade due to ongoing closures of the A38 for roadworks, and is losing substantial money as a result.

 

 

 

 

Halfway House, Twowatersfoot (right)

 

 

To the west, the Coldstreamer (left) in Gulval, outside Penzance, closed in March.  It seems like this is another case of disgruntled licensees chucking the pub keys back at owners Punch Taverns, but whatever has happened the place is still closed and presumably new tenants will be sought.

 

In Falmouth, the Wodehouse Arms closed on 6 March following the departure of its licensees after 12 years.  Presumably owners St Austell Brewery are seeking new tenants; it was still closed at the end of April.

 

 

Meanwhile, not a new closure but an ongoing one: the Chain Locker, also in Falmouth, has run into problems during its refit by St Austell Brewery.  A historical Grade II listed building, refurbishment was always going to be a tricky business but apparently, apart from uncovering some interesting archaeological features during stripping down, more serious problems with the building have been found including subsidence and a need for structural underpinning to hold the place up!  This means the hoped-for reopening date around now has been missed and it looks like late summer or even into autumn before reopening can now be considered.

Assets of Community Value (ACV) - CAMRA announced recently that planning law with respect to pubs will now at last be modified by the Government.  Up until now, owners could close a pub as a pub, and use it for some other retail purpose without having to go through the planning process with local councils.  Hence the rash across the country of pubs being turned into restaurants or supermarkets and the like in recent years.  Now, pubs are to be granted their own status in that owners have to submit detailed planning applications to change them into anything other than a pub, which gives everyone the opportunity to raise objections with planning authorities during the consultation period.  It is hope that this will slow down the relentless loss of pubs across the country.  The law will be amended to bring this in during July 2017; however, Punch Taverns and Enterprise Inns have apparently promised they will sign up to the principle immediately, so hurrah for them (for a change!).  Let’s see what happens with the Coldstreamer.  This, then, takes the pressure off CAMRA branches to get pubs quickly put on the ACV register, since the new regulation will achieve (only better) the same effect of delaying any proposed changes to a pub’s status.  As CAMRA now puts it, the ACV listing process was ‘a stepping-stone’ to getting this change in the law to protect our pubs.  Pity it didn’t happen in time to save the Old Stag in Liskeard, for instance, now on sale (again!) as a residential development.

CAMRA Kernow Pub of the Year 2017 - The Old Ale House in Truro won the accolade this year, following inspection rounds by a number of members who visited at different times to give a good cross-section of scores.  Runner-up was the ‘front in Falmouth, a former holder of the title who made it to the final of the National POTY competition back in 2012.  The scores were extremely close, almost worthy of declaring a draw, but we have to decide a clear winner to go on to the next, regional, stage of the competition.  Cider Pub of the Year is Stables in Newquay.