doc

The Beehive, in Prospect Hill, will close for nearly three weeks today, for its first refit for 30 years.

The Eastcott pub will re-open on Friday, August 29 and landlord Andy Marcer celebrates 22 years in charge of the pub on Thursday, August 14.

He has kept his plans close to his chest but is keen to dispel one or two rumours.

“I don’t want to give away too much about what we are doing,” he said. “I have been drinking in this pub since 1975 and I have always liked the character of the place.

“I am not going to turn it into a wine bar. I am going to be bringing in a wider range of ales, ciders and wines.”

He will be serving six real ales, as opposed to the four he currently stocks.

Another addition will be hot food, though Andy says it will be just pie, mash and gravy.

The development at Regent Circus is entering its final stage of development, with an opening date set for the end of this year, or early next year.

It is close to The Beehive and Andy is keen to take advantage of the increased footfall likely to emerge as a result of the new businesses.

“The shoppers going in and out of there should be really good for trade,” he said.

“We have been discussing changes with the brewery over the last couple of years, since we found out about the new development.”

The pub has been redecorated and repainted over the years, but this project will be the first physical alterations made in the pub since the mid-1980s.

Andy has moved to ease fears it will become an unrecognisable space, with reassurances it will retain much of the heritage which has made it so popular among the community.

“It’s something that needs doing,” he said.

“We are very much keeping the ethos and atmosphere of the place.

“I am keeping schtum about the noticeable changes for the moment, but they will be very much in keeping with tradition.”