Pubs reopen for Christmas

TWO historic pubs in Portishead High Street have re-opened in time for Christmas.

Members of the public were shocked when the White Lion, once an old water mill, and The Poacher, the town’s oldest pub, both closed in October.

Contractors were seen working round the clock at the White Lion and then on December 15 the shutters were removed and the pub reopened for business. A temporary management company is running it until a new landlord takes up the lease.

The Poacher re-opened on December 17, which was almost as much of a surprise for manager Will Rae as it was for his customers. New licensees Ian and Zoe Clarke negotiated the lease for The Poacher and asked Will to help get the doors open within two days of receiving the keys.

Former Gordano School student Will is a familiar face behind the bar, having previously worked in a senior position at the White Lion for many years.

Ian who is currently working for security forces overseas, will return home in the New Year to organise the refurbishment of The Poacher.

Will said: “Ian and Zoe have big plans for the future of The Poacher and I am looking forward to being a part of them.”

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Zoe added: “We will continue to run the traditional Poacher quiz nights, open mic evenings, crib nights and live music. Unfortunately won’t be serving food until the New Year but it will be worth the wait, we will be introducing a new carvery and an extensive new menu.”