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The angle /hungry horse always seemed to do OK.. but COVID would have killed it. as it seemed to survive due to contractors through the week from the ‘close’ hotels, and people who booked them at the weekend as they show as xx from Newcastle and are cheap. Till people realise it’s not that close.

Although with sambuccas /kfc/tgi ‘skiff in ‘ been closer to the hotels they may have dragged the trade Away.

i used it with the kids as it was close to metro for cinema and not badly priced for a know what you are getting meal..

I do know that the building was falling apart and had issues with drains and leaks.

on a side note that Aldi is the worst in the region for size, layout and stock Freshness, and dont get me started on the traffic trying to get out the range.
 

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That Aldi is terrible, you re right, though there's one in Westerhope which is also lousy [poor stock and a queue system which is unmarked which requires all to queue in 1 aisle - not bad in itself but only if you know that it's the case].

You re right on the distance to MC, just too far to park and walk, might as well eat in MC. Contractors at the hotels round there but as you say Sambucca, or the el cheapo place in the Premiere Inn. I know that building as a whole had a significant rat infestation problem [I am sure not an issue for Greene King].

BTW I see Sambucca's mysterious cash only expansion has extended to the bottom of Whickham bank, the old pub there which became an italian restaurant.
 

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When sambuccas started it was cash only. But a lot of them started taking cards a few years ago. which surprised me.

I am surprised it has taken so long for them to move into Gateshead. They have been all over north Tyneside for years. And Benidorm if I remember correctly.
 

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When sambuccas started it was cash only. But a lot of them started taking cards a few years ago. which surprised me.

I am surprised it has taken so long for them to move into Gateshead. They have been all over north Tyneside for years. And Benidorm if I remember correctly.
I stand corrected on the cash thing. They have Trinity Sq too 'sarf' of the river.

Restaurants – Sambuca Restaurants

The operation piques the interest of a number of people....

I ve copied the sambuca references to restaurants too
 

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When sambuccas started it was cash only. But a lot of them started taking cards a few years ago. which surprised me.

I am surprised it has taken so long for them to move into Gateshead. They have been all over north Tyneside for years. And Benidorm if I remember correctly.

Quite a few in various parts of Newcastle too!
 

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Interesting snippet in an article about a brewery moving from Whitley Bay to Royal Quays that RQ has 25% vacant units.

Even if they got the site for free it's mad. This is Royal Quays that has permission to convert around half the site to light industrial use and storage...

What shall we do this evening darling,
oh let's get the bus to a wind blown, half abandoned semi abandoned factory outlet centre with some light industrial stuff mixed in. Fabulous, I can't wait for drinkies
It might make sense if they are really opening a brewery with a small associated taproom, but if they think that Royal Quays is going to become a top night out for beer lovers they need an intervention.
 

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@newcastlepubs - yes, it is a bit barking. To work in any way they would need a lot more leisure stuff there. Yes, there’s the bowling but it will take more than that.
Yes, you have wet and wild but that seems to be 'Dry and Tame' [and very shut].

It's not [as far as I can tell] surrounded by a lot of microbrew drinking housing. Not being rude about Meadowell [and happy to be corrected] but it doesn't strike me as fertile ground for locals partaking of 'luxury' beer sales.

Also transport etc - so we're not a perfect example but Mrs NP and I might think* of getting a metro to Tynemouth or Whitley bay for a drink, with friends or just for a change, but there's no metro particularly close to Royal Quays [it's a 10-15 mins scenic walk thru Meadowell- see above]. Taxi makes for an expensive night out and not sure I fancy a bus journey down there. Ok driving but then you're into designated drivers and all sorts of complications.

That means you have what is essentially a country pub with all of the problems associated with a sector which is dying on its feet [pre covid].

In fairness it might be the case that this is simply a really a cheap location for a brewery and if they manage any off sales or taproom then it's gravy, but if they think that their Whitley Bay punters will schlep to a windswept wasteland with shuttered shops... I hear the buckling of straight-jackets :).

Parish notice - posts of Royal Quays brewpub copied from retail

*I am actively choosing to use the present tense :)
 

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I worry now if there is going to be another big cull of pubs due to COVID 19, particularly the old school boozers that only rely on alcohol sales and haven't diversified. On my reckoning, half of pubs in North Shields have gone in the last 30 years. Also in the area of Whitehaven I'm based now, there was once seven pubs, now only two are left.
 

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I worry now if there is going to be another big cull of pubs due to COVID 19, particularly the old school boozers that only rely on alcohol sales and haven't diversified. On my reckoning, half of pubs in North Shields have gone in the last 30 years. Also in the area of Whitehaven I'm based now, there was once seven pubs, now only two are left.
I said back early in the first lockdown that there was a very good chance there will be far fewer pubs to go to post covid, the only ones who look sure to survive are the likes of wetherspoons and other chain pubs. Independents will surely be in real trouble, if not already, if this goes on too much longer.
 

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I said back early in the first lockdown that there was a very good chance there will be far fewer pubs to go to post covid, the only ones who look sure to survive are the likes of wetherspoons and other chain pubs. Independents will surely be in real trouble, if not already, if this goes on too much longer.
The chains are likely to survive as they make a large amount of their money from food. Also pubs in prime locations like Newcastle city centre should pull through. More worrying will be ones in places like Wallsend which often fall into the traditional boozer category and must be losing massive amounts of money. Then there are the Fosters and football places that rely on football fans and were also hit by the cancellation of the Euros when they finally reopened last summer.
 

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I said back early in the first lockdown that there was a very good chance there will be far fewer pubs to go to post covid, the only ones who look sure to survive are the likes of wetherspoons and other chain pubs. Independents will surely be in real trouble, if not already, if this goes on too much longer.
Wetherspoons are on a bit of a spending spree, buying up skint pubs and people who want out, typically at below bargain basement prices. Lovely guy Tim Martin. Ultimately as with many things Marx's analysis stacks up; you either have very large businesses or very small niche ones, the mid size players are at risk.

Ultimately there are a lot of variables in play. The real killer will be rent, it's all very well having your staff furloughed and a few quid here and there but if you re left sitting on a huge debt... Things will be different for tenancies from pubcos than free houses.

However you can make a case [many do] that there will be a bit of a blowout on leisure [depending of course how the leisure re opens]. You have a percentage of people still being paid but their leisure spend is either sitting in the bank or getting spent on 'toys'. I accept that is not the case for everyone.

Where this might get sketchy is as Alyett indicates if you have:
  • regional relaxations but support reduced nationally and/or
  • re opening for food led [which I can make a case for], but in that instance you can have a situation where the state says well you could serve food, so we're slashing your support but for that pub there is no market for food.
You might have a lot of operators getting out and new entrants to the market - because you will be able to get in at ground level for lower costs [and possibly lose your shirt...].
 

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Whatever happens, the long decline in the pub industry over the last 30 years could see a sharp decline this year as many pubs close down due to the COVID 19 crisis. What I think will emerge are two types of pubs, the Wetherspoons/ Hungry Horse/ Brewers Fayre style of cheap drink and middle of the road meals sold at low prices in large pubs aimed at families and groups of friends, and specialist pubs for markets like real ale drinkers and music fans. Some pubs with a good reputation for meals might also convert into licenced restaurants( I can think of two in Whitehaven that have done this in recent years).
This does leave the alcohol only pubs and the lads and lager Sky Sports Shown Here places. Sadly I can see most of these pubs going as they have nothing else to fall back on and would a landlord who has struggled for 12 months with closures and restrictions be willing to fork out 2k every month to show sport that most people can watch at home. ( This business model has been in decline for the last 10 years due to the rising cost of showing sport in pubs and more people being able to watch at home).
 

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Whatever happens, the long decline in the pub industry over the last 30 years could see a sharp decline this year as many pubs close down due to the COVID 19 crisis. What I think will emerge are two types of pubs, the Wetherspoons/ Hungry Horse/ Brewers Fayre style of cheap drink and middle of the road meals sold at low prices in large pubs aimed at families and groups of friends, and specialist pubs for markets like real ale drinkers and music fans. Some pubs with a good reputation for meals might also convert into licenced restaurants( I can think of two in Whitehaven that have done this in recent years).
This does leave the alcohol only pubs and the lads and lager Sky Sports Shown Here places. Sadly I can see most of these pubs going as they have nothing else to fall back on and would a landlord who has struggled for 12 months with closures and restrictions be willing to fork out 2k every month to show sport that most people can watch at home. ( This business model has been in decline for the last 10 years due to the rising cost of showing sport in pubs and more people being able to watch at home).
All correct, tho it's probably slightly more nuanced.
  • I would not want to have a free house where I don't own the building in [say] Blaydon that relied on locals and sport. There will be a nasty day of reckoning and people applying for planning consent for flats. If you own the building you might [just] get away with it.
  • However if the pub is a pubco tenancy you might find that that the landlord has been furloughed and that they re open if not as normal then, normal-ish.
  • 'Country' pubs relying on non locals will find it tough [if not in tourist areas] - I don't just mean in the boonies, I mean somewhere with little local or destination traffic.
  • Sports rights - how long have you got. You have to balance [it's a curious lesson in Marx's contradictions in capitalism] how much you can charge to maximise revenue before you start scaring people away and/or their buying 'pirate' versions. Then you have the clubs wanting more money because of gate revenue losses but different methods of watching [I'd be curious to see how the amazon matches worked, there is a story that they might get into F1 on prime too]. there's the current premier league model of collective sale of the package but you might ask how long [say] MUFC might want to feel as if they are subsidising West Brom and Sheffield and instead the big clubs go off and sell their own media rights... european superleague....etc etc. My feeling is that the current charges are unsustainable for the licensed trade but I don't know what plan B might be. Even in the Broad Chare [not by any means a footie pub] you can [will, perhaps is more correct] see groups of mates watching football on a tablet or phone using their sky package and the pub's wifi...
 

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Over the last few days I have skimmed through this entire thread, I don't get out much now and there must be loads of new pubs in town I have never been in and probably never will now. On the 28th it will be a year since I was in a pub, 3 Bulls for a meet up with the guys I used to work with on the buses. Back then the virus was just a news story from a far away land.

Regarding Sky in pubs, it is now so easy and cheap to get football elsewhere I think they might have killed the goose that laid the golden egg. People are also ( rightly or wrongly) sick of being preached at by a bunch of spoilt rich men.

I am organising another drink for my mates in August, more in hope than expectation, just to give us something to look forward too, but I won't be out unless normality has resumed, I don't want to be forced to sit and served by staff wearing a biohazard suit.

Who would have thought simple things like queueing 3 deep at a bar would be missed?
 
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