A COUNTRY pub in the city will be the philosophy behind a new venture after planning permission was granted.
Brunning and Price, whose other pubs include Old Harkers Arms in Chester and the Grosvenor Arms at Aldford, is to convert St Martin’s Lodge, next to the HQ building overlooking the racecourse.
St Martin’s Lodge was designed and built by 18th century Chester architect Thomas Harrison as his own private residence.
And the pub, seating 150 diners and featuring a large beer garden, is likely to be named the ‘Thomas Harrison’ in his honour when it opens in late summer.
Founding partner Graham Price, of the Aldford-based pub company, said: “We are chuffed to bits that after almost a year in development, we have finally been given the green light to bring this handsome building, which has been boarded up for years, back to life.”
Brunning and Price has renovated a number of historically important buildings in the region over the last 30 years, including the Corn Mill in Llangollen, the Pant yr Ochain in Gresford, Sutton Hall in Macclesfield and most recently Old Hall, Sandbach.
“People who have visited our country pubs will have a good idea of our style and the care with which we approach any renovation project,” commented Mr Price.
“We will as ever focus our energies on sympathetically restoring and enhancing what is a classic Georgian building: you won’t find wide-screen televisions, gaming machines or thumping music, but you will find good old furniture, lots of prints, old photographs, rugs and books, and open fires. It’s going to be a classic country pub in the city, with character in spades.
“One of the things that attracted us to the property were the extensive gardens: what better way to break up a day’s shopping in town than a cooling drink in a proper pub garden within the city walls?”