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Stanley Arms aims to continue under new landlord but closing weekend party scrapped

Posted on - 20th October, 2023 - 1:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Business, Food & Drink, Politics, Preston City Centre, Preston News, Pubs
The Stanley Arms Pic: Tony Worrall
The Stanley Arms Pic: Tony Worrall

The Stanley Arms will continue in some form in the future, it is hoped, with the building owners planning to find a new landlord.

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However, it is not clear whether the pub will be able to reopen even if a new landlord is found, according to Heineken-owned Star Pubs.

The Lancaster Road pub is listed as ‘coming soon’ on the Star Pubs listings site with estimated ongoing costs of £14,417 and annual rent of £35,000. Its estimated annual turnover is listed as £520,000. Applications for a new landlord remain open.

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However, Star Pubs are not 100% clear on whether the pub will be able to reopen pending the outcome of a Preston City Council licensing review – due to take place next week at the Town Hall – where Lancashire Constabulary will be making representations.

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A spokesperson from Star Pubs told Blog Preston: “The current licensee is leaving due to licensing issues which means he is unable to trade. The pub is now closed.

“A licensing meeting is scheduled for next week where we’ll learn if and when the pub will be allowed to reopen.”

Meanwhile, the current staff at The Stanley Arms have thanked it’s customers of the last six years after they closed due to ‘licensing pressure’.

They have taken to Facebook to share a post saying they hope new operators take over soon, however, for them it is “the final curtain”.

They have said that the pub has closed because of licensing issues, with the pub meaning to open this weekend for the last time under current management but now it is unable to.

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The circumstances of those licensing issues have not yet been published by Preston City Council. Both Preston City Council and Lancashire Constabulary declined to comment at this stage.

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Taking to their Facebook page, the current staff wrote: “To all our Friends and Patrons. Unfortunately, due to further licensing pressure we will not be able to open this weekend after all, and this ends our tenancy at The Stanley Arms.

“New operators will hopefully come in to keep this pub going, in the not-too-distant future and we wish them all the best. For us though, it is the final curtain.

“I’d like to thank the people of Preston who have been our customers, staff and friends over the last 6 years.

“Many laughs and memories have been shared and you’ve all helped to make The Stanley feel to us like home.”

A licensing review is set to take place on Thursday October 26 where councillors will consider the current licence conditions.

They will hear from the police/other parties whether there should be any changes.

Read more: Review: A natter, pint and platter at this welcoming Penwortham micro-pub

Outgoing Stanley Arms landlord Paul Butcher told Blog Preston: “As you might imagine, we’re totally gutted to be losing The Stanley Arms, although it’s with such fond memories. 

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“Overall I feel privileged to have been a landlord in one of Preston’s most iconic and historic venues and wish all the best for the new tenants and hope they can steer the pub into a bright future.”

The pub initially announced it would be closing temporarily last week, citing licensing pressures and economic challenges.

A Facebook post said: “We can’t say what will happen next to The Stanley as we don’t know at this point but there is too much pressure on all independent bars right now.”

The pub, on Lancaster Road, dates back to the 1850s and is a grade-II listed building.

In 2017, Star Pubs – owned by Heineken – funded a £250,000 renovation of the pub which was described as a ‘transformation’.

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