The St Mary’s Inn pub in Morpeth, Northumberland, has taken the decision to close due to “unavoidable disruption” from community construction work being carried out nearby.
The 11-bedroom pub, which is built on the former St Mary’s Hospital, opened in 2014. At the time, plans were being carried out to create St Mary’s Park which would include a community centre and sports facilities.
The pub expected to benefit from the amenities once construction has finished.
However, the building work is still being carried out.
A statement issued by St Mary’s Inn said: “Progress has not been as great as anticipated by everyone involved in the project. Even more concerning is that construction work is likely to have an additional impact over the next 24 months as it comes much closer to the property and for many weeks will be immediately adjacent with unavoidable disruption.
“Following a detailed review of the current situation, it is with great regret that a decision has been made to close St Mary’s Inn with immediate effect. The pub has been a source of great pride to everyone involved in making it happen, a team who worked so hard to bring to life something that – in retrospect – was perhaps ahead of its time.
“We will revisit this decision from time to time and it is our ambition to reopen when the surrounding construction work is substantially complete. We remain confident that the business can prosper when conditions at St Mary’s are more favourable than they are right now or in the immediate future.”
The company has said that it will look to support members of staff affected wherever practicable.
Taking to the pub’s Facebook page, patrons expressed their dismay at the news.
Steve Thomson said: “Just read their statement….. blaming building work going to slowly for them! I’m sorry, I visited and although it was a lovely building the food for me just was not good enough to warrant a return trip! If it had of been I’d of become a regular and I doubt I’m the only one to feel that way! People will travel to get good food!”
Suse-Hogie Hogan said: “Oh what a shame such a lovely reminder of old St Mary’s Hospital…. I felt such nostalgia in the pub remembering my times ‘in the main entrance’ as a child in the hospital in which both of my parents worked as nurses. I truly pray you might find a way to keep it going.”
While others were left questioning if they would be able to get money back for deposits and vouchers.
Rachel Cole had her wedding reception booked at the pub on 23 June and paid a £300 deposit for 11 rooms. On the Facebook post she said: “I’m gutted, had to find out from a friend! I spoke to them last week, you telling me the manager had no clue last week?”
Claire Brown said: “We are booked to stay 26th May for the planned St Mary’s bike ride! Hoping I get a refund of my booking which is paid in full!”
The pub’s sister hotel, Jesmond Dene House in Newcastle, has dedicated a team to contact those with bookings at St Mary’s Inn.
No one was available at St Mary’s Inn when contacted by the Caterer, however a representative from Jesmond Dene confirmed that they are in the process of contacting all future guests and offering a relocation to the hotel or a cancellation and refund. This also applies to anyone with gift vouchers for St Mary’s Inn.
Videos from The Caterer archives