£150k to transform 'derelict' Kidsgrove pub
A DERELICT bar which has been empty for six years is being reopened as a community pub.
Brennans, in Kidsgrove, closed in 2006 because it was no longer, 'economically viable' and has since been boarded up.
Developer Farlane Property Group Ltd was granted permission in 2009 to transform the pub into two, three-bedroom homes and a two-bedroom home.
However, the plans collapsed after the company fell into administration in 2010.
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Now, Caldmore Taverns has snapped up the building from the receivers, for a sum of about £87,000. The company, which already operates Darcys in Fenton, the Sutherland Arms in Stoke, and the Wheatsheaf in Northwood plans to reopen it in November.
Company owner Mark Bird, aged 52, is overseeing a renovation project to the tune of around £150,000. He said: "We want to open in November, but it depends how much work there is to do.
"I bought it from the receivers about three months ago.
"The roof needs work and the pub used to be made up of little rooms, which I have knocked through. It was too dark and dingy.
"We are not going to be serving food. That is quite a difficult market, it's not as easy as people think.
"We will be putting on entertainment and there is a need for a community pub.
"We have got others in the area and they work well.
"The refurbishment will probably cost around £150,000, but it will cost less for us than it would someone else, because we do all the work.
"I'm not sure what it will be called yet."
Kidsgrove councillor Margaret Astle, Labour, said it was good news that the building in Liverpool Road was being developed.
She said: "Considering we are short of new housing in Kidsgrove, it would have been ideal to turn the building into town centre apartments.
"But, if it is going to be turned back into a pub, then I wish the owners the very best of success.
"The important thing is getting a derelict building, on the gateway to Kidsgrove, back into use."
Historian Mervyn Edwards, of the Potteries Pub Preservation Group, said: "It's nice to hear a story in the pub trade that is positive, because pubs are going down left, right and centre.
"It wasn't too long ago that the Plough nearby was refurbished.
"Kidsgrove is famous for having the best real ale pub in North Staffordshire, the Bluebell. It could be that a real ale pub crawl could be created in the town."
Jonathan Purcell, aged 37, of Liverpool Road, said: "I think it's good it is going to be reopened as a pub.
"Kidgrove used to have lots of pubs. It makes a nice change to hear of one opening."