Boss Joycelyn excited as Fylde coast gastro-pub gets ready to reopen
Fylde coast gastro pub, the Farmers Arms at Great Eccleston, is set to reopen on May 31.
The pub is now undergoing a facelift after being shut for more than a year due to the pandemic causing the collapse of the business.
But now after the Oakman Group bought six county Seafood Pubs and installed former owner Joycelyn Neve as managing director of the brand, the future is looking bright once more.
Fylde-born Joycelyn said: “It is very exciting and we are all very busy at the moment getting ready. The Seafood Pubs have been shut for over a year now and the Farmers in particular was due for external redecoration.
"At the time in March it was booked in for work on the outside. Now we have the opportunity to get it done now before we open again.
“People from the village have been knocking on the door to ask when are we opening and trying to book tables. It has been so lovely.
“We could have opened outside, but we wanted to get it right and make sure everyone’s first visit was a good one.”
She said Peter Borg-Neal from Oakman had been an industry friend for many years and she was delighted when they came in to help and that the fish dishes based on her family’s Fleetwood heritage wold remain.
She said: “They were best in class for people development training and had won the Princess Royal Training Award twice, so Oakman was a company I had long admired. They did not have a presence in the North. It was a good fit for both sides.
“This week we were down in Ascot for Oakman’s annual chef’s conference and it was my dad’s fish sent down for the meals. We will be using all the same great local suppliers and the menus will still be much the same.
“Oakman’s outside areas are fantastic so there is scope for improvements. At the Farmers we have a new scheme to make the outside area bigger with cover and heating. While we can trade indoors from May 17 not everyone will be comfortable with that so it is important to have a good outside area."
Joycelyn's Seafood Pub Companay, which had ten Lancashire pubs, was private equity backed so did not qualify for Government aid following the first lockdown last March such as the business interruption loans. She said the firm fell through the gaps in support and there was no alternative but to pout it in administration.
The Oakman Group stepped in to buy six of the pubs, the Alma Inn, Laneshawbridge, the Derby Arms, Longridge, the Farmers Arms, Great Eccleston, the Fenwick Arms, Claughton, the Fleece Inn, Addingham, West Yorks and the Forest Inn, at Fence. Now they are re-opening creating at least 150 jobs.
Blackpool Gazette: Thanks for reading. If you value what we do and are able to support us, a digital subscription is just £1 for your first month. Try us today by clicking hereRead Also: Lancashire's Seafood Pub company back in business