Town pub is set for an overhaul

The empty pub on Church Street will be re-opened by local landlord Mick Gornall and renamed The Farmers
The empty pub on Church Street will be re-opened by local landlord Mick Gornall and renamed The Farmers

It’s cheers all round for Garstang’s pub scene as the former Farmer Arms is set to re-open its doors again.

Longtime local landlord Mick Gornall is set to give a new lease of life to the ‘eyesore’ landmark on Church Street, boarded-up with metal shutters for over a year.

Mr Gornall, licensee at the town centre King’s Arms Hotel for more than 20 years, has bought the empty pub, currently called The Bell and Bottle, with plans to restore it to the name by which it is better known, The Farmers.

He plans to give up his lease at The King’s Arms to concentrate on The Farmers.

He said: “For me it was a no-brainer when the pub came up for sale.

“I’ve been in Garstang a long time and have a strong association with the people and the football club.”

The redundant pub has had a troubled history and in recent years was taken over and converted by Italian restaurateur Salvatore Vivace before changing hands again and undergoing a £50,000 re-investment by local pub boss Ross Wallis and his one-time Nateby-based Tangerine Taverns company.

Last orders were called only a fortnight after the pub opened in December 2012 and owners Punch Taverns put the premises on the market last year.

Mr Gornall added: “It has always been The Farmers even with all the changes and it makes sense to rename it something everyone is familiar with. It will be a traditional local pub for people to drop-in after a walk, an evening drink and I’ll carry on with the darts and pool leagues.”

He said the new look Farmers would open its doors in the next few months after a re-fit and the conversion of new living quarters.

Enterprise Inns which runs The King’s Arms Hotel said in a statement: “The Kings Arms leasehold is on the market for the first time in over 20 years, and Enterprise would like to thank Mick Gornall for running a great community pub throughout this time.

“This is an outstanding pub business which offers the potential for a new operator to grow the food and drinks offer and engage with the local community to drive the business to even greater success.”