A number of Sheffield pubs and restaurants are reopening on 4 July. Sadly though, some haven’t made it through the current pandemic.
Several Sheffield pubs have already declared they won’t be reopening. Some look like they are permanently shuttering, whilst others are delaying their opening. A number are in limbo, with current tenants moving on, or precarious finances due to the recent forced closures.
Here’s a list of some notable Sheffield pubs that — at the time of writing — won’t be reopening on 4 July.
The Devonshire Cat
One of the most notable Sheffield pub scene losses from the Coronavirus pandemic is The Devonshire Cat.
Operators Abbeydale Brewery have declared that the popular Wellington Street pub won’t be reopening.
In a Facebook post, a spokesman said: “It is with great sadness that we must announce that The Devonshire Cat will not be re-opening as an Abbeydale Brewery pub.
“With the underlying trend of a reduction in footfall over the past years it has become increasingly challenging to run the Devonshire Cat as a viable business.
It is, therefore, inevitable that the Covid-19 outbreak has had a devastating effect on the viability of this business.”The Devonshire Cat
The Rising Sun on Fulwood Road will continue to operate as an Abbeydale Brewery house.
The Wick at Both Ends
Another shock is popular West Street bar The Wick at Both Ends. Staff confirmed the cocktail bar won’t be reopening “as you know it” in a post on Facebook.
“The Wick sadly will not be reopening as you know it, we would like to thank all of our customers and staff past and present for such a great time over the year’s. We look forward to seeing you on the other side the bar of many of our fine city’s independent pubs and bars.”The Wick at Both Ends
Nearly a thousand people commented on the post, many expressing their shock and sharing their memories.
UPDATE: In more positive news, the bar will be reopening in a different guise under new ownership. Property investment company Nicholson & Co are said to have purchased the freehold in a six-figure deal. The bar will now be operated by Emerald Late Bars & Restaurants who aim to make it “bigger and better”.
The Railway Hotel
Bramall Lane’s The Railway Hotel has been a destination for football fans over the years. Unfortunately the lack of crucial football crowds and the unforeseen closure of the nearby Copthorne Hotel has contributed to its announced closure.
“We had hoped to weather the Covid-19 storm, but with no prospect of football crowds (as we know them), no hotel, and far fewer students in the coming months we simply cannot make the numbers work.”The Railway Hotel
The pub posted a Facebook update thanking the pub’s community.
“All we can say now is thank you to our wonderful staff, customers and suppliers who helped us build our pub into a community.”The Railway Hotel
The Black Bull
Ecclesfield’s The Black Bull caused shock with the announcement it would be closing.
“After a long and hard think we regret to inform you that the Black Bull won’t be reopening. We would like to thank all our customers.”The Black Bull
The Church Street pub is one of Ecclesfield’s traditional pubs. There have been at least two versions of The Black Bull pub on the site over the centuries.
Rumours of the pub being haunted persisted for many years. There are records of prize fights taking place at the original Black Bull, including one where a fighter died.
However, there is hope for The Black Bull to be resurrected in the future. Star Pubs are currently advertising for new operators and plans for a £260,000 refurbishment have been drafted.
Pitsmoor Hotel & Staffordshire Arms
Two Sheffield Pubs that hit the headlines during lockdown are the Pitsmoor Hotel and Staffordshire Arms.
The Staffordshire Arms on Sorby Street in Burngreave was caught serving people during lockdown. Subsequently, it was served with a prohibition order in early April.
Licensee Paul Greasby also ran the Pitsmoor Hotel on Pitsmoor Road, which was later raided by police on 23 April.
Drinkers were found hiding in cupboards and on the pub’s roof.
As a result, Sheffield City Council have stripped both pubs of their licenses and neither will be reopening on 4 July.
A popular Sheffield United matchday pub, Sheaf House on Bramall Lane, won’t be reopening on 4 July.
Landlords Jayne and Brian Kempshaw decided to not renew their lease when it expired in June.
Rumours circulated that the pub site was being sold to convert into a Tesco. However, that has been denied.
“The rumours going round saying Sheaf House is getting changed to a Tesco are not true.
Our lease is up on June 24 and we are not renewing it. We’ve loved running the Sheaf. We’ve met some wonderful people and match days have been great.
Hope the next tenant can make a success of it because it ain’t easy.”Jayne and Brian Kempshaw, Sheaf House
The Sheaf House is currently listed for lease on the Findmypub website along with several other Sheffield pubs.
The New Bridge Inn
Across the city, the New Bridge Inn on Penistone Road North has been a popular Sheffield Wednesday matchday destination over the years.
However, the current licensees have also decided not to continue at the pub. The New Bridge Inn has been “boarded up for the foreseeable future”.
The Sheffield pub is also now listed for lease at the Findmypub website.
The Hallamshire House
There’s less of a panic over the The Hallamshire House on Commonside.
It has been confirmed that the Thornbridge Brewery house won’t be opening straight away on 4 July. However, it will be reopening at a later date.
“We won’t be ready to open on the 4th. I wish that this wasn’t the case but the fact is, we need to be extremely careful with how we operate, and no venue should feel the need to rush this.
No pub is designed with a pandemic in mind but the shape of ours is particularly awkward for social distancing.
Once everything is in place and we are sure that we can keep you safe, then we shall open the doors.”The Hallamshire House
Similarly, popular Broad Lane pub Fagans have decided to delay opening.
“It is with a heavy heart that we have to delay the re-opening of Fagans.
Because it is such a small traditional pub the new measures mean we either remove half of the tables or install floor to ceiling screens.
We cannot have a one- way system as the toilets are in the middle and we only have a small yard.”Tom and Barbara, Fagans
The traditional Sheffield pub features a large Pete McKee mural “The Kiss” on its main exterior wall.
No date has been give for when Fagan’s might reopen.
“Please be patient, we will be back and are looking forward to seeing you all.”Tom and Barbara, Fagans
City Centre bar Public haven’t outright publicly confirmed their status, but stated in a reply tweet they were too small (and perfect!) to open straight away.
“So Fagan’s not opening on the 4th, same reason as us really, too damn small and perfect!”Public
So Fagan’s not opening on the 4th, same reason as us really, too damn small and perfect! ?
Where might one go on the 4th at midday to sit with a paper for an hour and drink a pint of of Guinness?
Second, does ANYWHERE in Sheffield serve Bass on cask?— PUBLIC (@P_U_B_L_I_C_) June 27, 2020
The bar — set in the converted old public toilets beneath Sheffield Town Hall on Surrey Street — has been a focus of the current pandemic.
Along with sister venues Gatsby (Division Street) and Picture House Social (Abbeydale Road), Public have been campaigning for better financial assistance for venues during the pandemic.
Fitzwilliam Street pub The Washington have also decided they will be delaying their opening.
In a statement posted to Facebook they commented that The Washington didn’t feel a “subdued, lifeless atmosphere” would suit the pub.
“We do not feel we can strike a balance between public/staff safety and delivering anything even remotely similar to the “Washy” experience”The Washington
They add a call to support independent pubs and bars if you do head out for a drink when rules are relaxed.
“We’ll be in touch again when the time is right.”The Washington
The Sheaf View
Likewise, The Sheaf View on Gleadless Road at Heeley have stated restrictions make reopening the pub unviable for the time being.
“We are sorry but the guidelines put in place by the government to enable us to open safely during the corona virus pandemic have made it virtually impossible for any of our pubs to open and to remain viable.
To be able to provide table service, register customers, monitor entrances and queuing, control social distancing inside and out, serve beer, sanitise effectively and regularly and generally keep our customers and staff Covid-safe, would take more staff per shift than our reduced takings could pay for.”The Sheaf View
There are also worries that a minority of drinkers will make it difficult to monitor the regulations properly.
“The increased pressure on staff being responsible for the day to day policing of the above, in a situation which may be made more difficult by a minority who, after a couple of pints, forget the rules is something we are not willing to subject them to.”The Sheaf View
The Sheaf View will continue to operate a take out service, however.
The Rutland Arms
Another popular City Centre pub delaying it’s opening is The Rutland Arms on Brown Street.
“We are now in the process of considering our best way forward, working with our staff to make sure when we reopen it will be in the safest possible way for everyone. We will not be reopening on July 4th for a number of reasonsThe Rutland Arms
In a Facebook post, the pub adds that is expects to make a further update in the coming weeks.
The New Barrack Tavern
Another of the most popular Sheffield pubs, award-winning The New Barrack Tavern also aren’t rushing to reopen on the 4th.
Posting to their Facebook page, the Penistone Road pub confirms they are working their way through implementing the new regulations.
“We have read the 43 page government guidelines and still have a few bits to sort so not going to rush to open this weekend.”The New Barrack Tavern
Subsequently, The New Barrack Tavern will be reopening on Friday 10 July with all necessary restrictions in place.
“We have missed you all so much. We plan to open Friday 10th July at 2pm.”The New Barrack Tavern
Church – Temple of Fun
Kelham Island destination bar Church have also confirmed they will not be reopening on 4 July.
The Temple of Fun instead tease exciting announcements in the coming weeks.
“We won’t be reopening this weekend, but we have exciting things to announce in the coming weeks.”Church – Temple of Fun
Dog & Partridge
Traditional pub the Dog & Partridge on Trippet Lane have also posted on Facebook to confirm they won’t be reopening on the 4th.
“Needless to say we can’t wait to see you all again. However, with public and staff safety in mind, we WON’T be opening Saturday 4th July.”Dog and Partridge
The popular Irish pub will update regarding their opening on their social media pages.
“We’ll open when we’re confident it’s safe to do so. Hopefully later this week we’ll have a firmer idea of an exact opening date and of course we’ll keep you posted.”Dog and Partridge
The Dog & Partridge is one of the most popular Sheffield pubs, so many eagerly await its reopening.
The Hillsborough Hotel
Things are a little less sure at Langsett Road’s Hillsborough Hotel though.
During the enforced lockdown period developers submitted plans to convert the historic hotel and pub into a multi-occupancy home.
The building has links to the nearby Hillsborough Barracks. It has previously been known as The Hero and His Horse, and The Wellington Inn.
Whilst the hotel had been just about breaking even, it emerged the pub part of the business was making a loss.
“The Hillsborough Hotel is too distant to either Hillsborough, or the growing Neepsend to attract the important night time and weekend trade.”David Cormack Architects
Architects insist the business is on the market as a going concern, but say it is “unlikely to attract a buyer in a declining market”.
OK, so this one is a little more complicated than the others — but for good reason.
The Harlequin on Nursery Street in the Kelham Island area have carefully considered their position for the 4 July relaxation of lockdown.
They initially won’t be opening for “general public” as such. Instead, they will be allowing only their regular customers who have supported them over the years inside the venue.
“The people who support us throughout the year have the chance to turn up (or not) and stay (or leave) as they wish. That’s how we’re going to treat the first few weeks from 4 July onwards”.Pete Roberts, The Harlequin
The Harlequin will effectively be operating from a pre-determined list of people allowed entry inside the pub. For everyone else, they will be offering only take-out, as they have throughout lockdown. Of course, Social Distancing regulations will be in place throughout.
It seems a fair compromise as Sheffield pubs start to ramp up to welcoming customers back in the ‘new normal’.
The Hillsborough Club
Finally, a good news story!
Owners Scott and Frank Heaton stated the Hillsborough Club on Bradfield Road would close following the impacts of Coronavirus and previous Sheffield Floods.
“As a result of the floods in November and now the COVID19 outbreak we will not be re-opening The Hillsborough Club.”Scott and Frank Heaton, The Hillsborough Club
However, in a much-welcomed update, they announced the club had been sold and would continue trading.
“After many weeks of deliberation with the enthusiastic new owner I’m assured that it will trade as before, business as usual. Obviously, there will be COVID restrictions in place — as there will be in all pubs — but other than that it will be the club we know and love”.Scott Heaton, The Hillsborough Club
The Hillsborough Club have announced they will be reopening on Monday 6 July.
It won’t be the same
Remember though, things won’t be the same in Sheffield’s pubs initially — even if you do manage to find one open.
Firstly, Social Distancing restrictions will be in place. It isn’t necessarily a case of meeting your mates for a few jars. You can only meet in small groups with members of one other household, or people within your ‘support bubble’. Distancing must be maintained under the new “one metre plus” rules.
Strict capacities will be in place, most venues will be operating table service only and payments will be contactless. Venues will likely operate one-way movement, and small toilets will function on a one-in-one-out basis.
Additionally, all Sheffield pubs will be required to take the names and addresses of everybody in case it is later needed for contact tracing. Many venues will insist on you booking a table before visiting.
Will you be heading out for a drink on 4 July? Have we missed any Sheffield pubs that won’t be reopening? Have your say in the comments…
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