Pub is back, with new menu and brand, after closure fears
- Credit: Neil Didsbury
Drinks will soon be flowing at a pub which was feared would never reopen to the public.
The Henry IV pub in Greenway Lane, Fakenham, closed during the first coronavirus lockdown.
There was disappointment in October when its owner, Greene King, said it was closing the pub along with 78 others permanently.
But the company has now announced the Henry IV is reopening with a new look and menu - instead of a 'Hungry Horse' branded pub it will be a 'Flaming Grill'.
Kevin Black, the pub's new manager, said: "We'll have a complete new menu and a new team. There'll be a focus on flame-grilled food and better service.
"We're also looking to make it more of a community pub and do things like sponsor local sports teams and offer it for local toddler groups.
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"We're also looking to introduce quality entertainment as well, like five-piece live bands.
"We're keeping the pool table and dart board, and run quiz nights and poker nights."
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Mr Black said the decision to revive the pub - which was built around 1952 - came after a Greene King director had a look around the site.
He said: "We looked at it and thought it was just too amazing to close down. It's got everything, a nice restaurant, a bar area and a nice beer garden.
Mr Black has worked in pubs for much of his career and has spent the past four years as manager of another Greene King pub, the Woolpack Inn in Golden Ball Street, Norwich. He said he was still living in the city, but planned to move up to Fakenham with his family soon.
Mr Black said the Henry IV would have a soft launch before opening to the general public.
He said: "This week, we're going to be inviting NHS workers, police and fire staff in to have a free meal on us. We'll also be having friends and family in as well as people from the local community.
"Then we're going to have our official opening on (Monday) June 28.
Mr Black said the reopening would create at least 15 full and part-time jobs in the kitchen, front of house and cleaning.
But he said like much of the hospitality industry, they were finding it a challenge to recruit and were keen to hear from anyone interested.