The Railway pub in Whittlesey has suddenly shut one year after £300,000 refurbishment

PUBLISHED: 16:02 06 August 2018 | UPDATED: 16:02 06 August 2018

Official opening of the Railway pub at Station Road, Whittlesey. Steve Barclay MP is with  licencee  Simon Bains.

Official opening of the Railway pub at Station Road, Whittlesey. Steve Barclay MP is with licencee Simon Bains.

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A popular Whittlesey pub that had a £300,000 refurbishment last year has closed while bosses find a new licensee.

Official opening of the Railway pub at Station Road, Whittlesey. Steve Barclay MP is with  licencee  Simon Bains.Official opening of the Railway pub at Station Road, Whittlesey. Steve Barclay MP is with licencee Simon Bains.

The Railway, in Station Road, underwent a 10-week closure in January 2017 ahead of the makeover by Heineken-owned Star Pubs and Bars.

However, punters took to social media last week to express their dismay at the sudden closure.

It is expected to reopen in ‘the next few weeks’.

A spokesperson for Star Pubs & Bars said: “We can confirm that The Railway, Whittlesey was being run by an independent licensee who left the pub at the end of last week, which has led to its closure.

“It is our intention to reopen the pub in the next few weeks under temporary management once we have made the necessary legal and licensing changes. “We shall also start looking for a new licensee to take the Railway forward on a permanent basis. It’s a popular local which recently benefited from a £300,000 refurbishment.”

On Facebook, one local said: “We didn’t realise it was closed and went down lunch time, no notice in the windows and the car park has massive concrete blocks at the entrance.”

Another added: “Is the Railway Inn Whittlesey open for business? The number is not recognised.

“It appears that Simon wasn’t making anything out of it so called it a day, shame as the food was really good.”

Former licensee, Simon Bains, from Peterborough, took over the reins last year creating 10 jobs.

The refurbishment saw the outside of the building transformed along with wooden cladding, a new porch and paintwork and attractive landscaping.

MP for North East Cambridgeshire, Steve Barclay, celebrated the Railway’s new direction as a traditional pub serving food by pulling the inaugural first pint.

The website for the pub now shows a black screen with a number that doesn’t work and the message “new website coming soon.”

The pub’s Facebook page has had fewer posts in recent weeks, with one post in June apologising for the short notice in closing that evening.

Over the past year it has become a staple of the local community, offering real ale events and live football.

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