Enterprise Inns' bright future for The Fountain and Union pubs
TWO city centre pubs look set for a bright new future.
The Union, in Westgate Street, may have closed its doors last Thursday but attentions are already turning to finding a new owner for the pub.
It is understood talks are taking place this week with a potential new tenant.
The Union closed suddenly after landlord Richard White and his business partner Matt Foster ran into debt and bailiffs came knocking at the door.
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He blamed ‘extortionate’ business rates and rent totalling £800 per week.
The nearby Fountain Inn also looks set to come under new management within the next three weeks.
Fears were sparked that it was under threat of closure when an A-board was put outside the pub telling its loyal customers that it had not closed down and was still open for business.
But bosses at Enterprise Inns, who own both The Union and the Fountain Inn, are buoyant about the future of both establishments.
Amy Dolphin, a spokeswoman for the pub chain, said: “We recognise that The Union has the potential to be a great city centre pub which appeals to residents and shoppers alike, and we are actively recruiting for someone with the enthusiasm and drive to take the business forward.”
Bar manager Chris Marsh, from The Westgate, which is opposite both pubs, said it was important that there were a number of drinking holes in the Westgate Street area to attract people.
Chris, pictured, said: “If there are a few different places to go, people are more likely to come down here for a drink or two. It would be good to see the pub reopen soon.”
It comes in the same week as Tredworth’s Golden Heart pub reopened its doors as The Treddy after a long period of closure.
New landlady Kerry Lewis opened the pub to customers last Friday.
Former pub regular Ryan Simpson, from Barton, said: “You see pubs closing all over the place so this has to be great news.”
The recent uncertainty over the city centre pubs comes as research by PricewaterhouseCoopers revealed that 18 shops are closing on Britain’s high streets every day.
More shops are closing than opening, with clothes stores, video and photography retailers suffering the hardest, while charity shops, bookies, cheque-cashing outlets and pawnbrokers continue to grow.