Brown Bear pub refurbishment set to start with a bang

A Berwick pub is still on track to re-open next month despite some setbacks.

Saturday, 22nd October 2016, 7:07 am
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 3:19 pm
The Brown Bear in Berwick

The Brown Bear is set to re-open as a community-based social enterprise on November 24.

Some of those who initially helped drive the project forward have dropped out due to demands on their time so there is now a broader group of people involved.

Mark Dodds, who is leading the project, said: “Planning for the Brown Bear revival is progressing very well.

“We now have a broader group of people involved and are hoping to get a contract agreed with Frank Flannigan this week.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“I’ve been tied up with meetings with potential suppliers, producers, brewers, wine merchants, staff, trades people and so on in advance of work progressing on site, all people who need to be prepared in good time ahead of D-Day.

“We have the beginnings of a staff team already. Trades people are ready to begin work according to the original schedule of a November 5 refurbishment start and I am hopeful that as long as we get a workable contract done within the next week it will all fall into place.”

The Hide Hill venue has been closed for the past year but has been bought by local businessman Frank Flannigan, who already owns several neighbouring properties.

Soon after buying the property, Mr Flannigan was approached by a group of locals determined to revive the pub as a community-based social enterprise, and to do a consultation exercise to help shape and decide the pub’s future.

A very simple menu showcasing regional produce will be introduced to start with until the pub gets a major refurbishment and structural changes further down the line.