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Outdoor bar area to open in front of historic Norwich building

PUBLISHED: 07:30 04 July 2020 | UPDATED: 07:56 06 July 2020

[Left] Craig Allison; Director of Bullards, John Bullard; Director of Bullards, Richard Pratt; owner of Crystal House and [Right] Russell Evans; Chairman of Bullards. Photo credit: Heist Films

[Left] Craig Allison; Director of Bullards, John Bullard; Director of Bullards, Richard Pratt; owner of Crystal House and [Right] Russell Evans; Chairman of Bullards. Photo credit: Heist Films

Heist Films

An outdoor bar area in front of Norwich’s ‘Crystal Palace’ will open serving drinks and gin based cocktails.

Russell Evans inside Crystal House, on the top floor, which will be made into a space to hire for events includng wedding receptions. Pic: ArchantRussell Evans inside Crystal House, on the top floor, which will be made into a space to hire for events includng wedding receptions. Pic: Archant

People will be able to enjoy a drink from the bar outside Crystal House in Cattle Market Street from Thursday.

It is the latest in a series of developments for the venue, which recently had the go-ahead from the council to transform into a gin bar, cafe and wedding venue.

Bullards boss Russell Evans, who will run the new distillery, said the outside bar will offer customers a taste of what’s to come while work inside is completed.

Every menu will have plans of the interior of the building on the back for customers to peruse while they select a drink, with prices starting at £3.80 for beer.

There will also be gin-based cocktails Old Tom Collins, Negroni and Rambling Strawberry, which start at £6, as well as wine from £4.50 and gin and tonic from £5 for a single.

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The outside bar, which will feature wooden barrel tables and stools, will be able to seat 20 to 25 people.

Table service applies when ordering drinks but, if there are no free seats, customers will also be able to buy takeaway drinks in environmentally-friendly cups.

Mr Evans said: “We’re hanging on to next Thursday to see how the weekend goes and we will stand in the wings, see what happens and learn from that when we open.”

The decision to open an outdoor bar came after Mr Evans gave up the lease on The Ten Bells pub on St Benedicts Street.

Mr Evans said: “It was prompted after we had a meeting in which we found out we were unable to have outdoor space outside the Ten Bells and, as the lease was due to end there in August, it was an easy decision to concentrate on something else.

“We were told we had permission to have an outdoor bar outside Cattle Market Street so I literally wandered out there to see if we could make it work in its own right - and the decision was made. We’re really excited to be opening an outdoor bar.”

Crystal House is a listed building, originally built in 1862 as a showroom, workshop and foundry for Holmes and Sons, which manufactured and assembled agricultural machinery.

The outdoor bar at Crystal House will be open Thursday to Sunday from 12pm to around 8pm.


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