Village pub near Norwich to stay open despite landlord announcing he is to leave

The Longe Arms pub in Spixworth, pictured back in 2013. Picture: Denise Bradley

The Longe Arms pub in Spixworth, pictured back in 2013. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Archant 2013

A pub in a village on the outskirts of Norwich will not be closing its doors despite the landlord announcing he is set to leave.

Eric Hogg has been at the helm of the Longe Arms in Spixworth for the past 18 months but will be moving on in May.

Mr Hogg said his time at the Crostwick Lane pub had been 'great' but cited personal reasons for his decision to leave.

But despite Mr Hogg's imminent departure a spokesman from owners Ei Publican Partnerships, formerly Enterprise Inns, insisted the pub will not be closing.

The spokesman said: 'We can confirm that the publicans at the Longe Arms, Spixworth, have informed us of their decision to leave the pub, due to personal reasons. A new experienced operator will be taking over the pub in due course.'

In 2010 the Longe Arms was saved from closure last year by locals Dave Whiting and Eric Donnelly, who stepped in after owners Enterprise Inns could not find anyone interested in taking on the lease.

After taking over the pair embarked on a major refurbishment programme, which saw the pub transformed inside and out.

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News that the pub is to remain open is great news for locals and comes at a time when another watering hole elsewhere in the city could be in line for a remarkable return.

The Marlpit Arms pub closed its doors in 2015, prompting fears the Hellesdon Road pub may never re-open again.

But the community campaigned to get the Grade II building listed as a community asset to stop it from being lost as a pub - and the site was bought by Cécile Bidet, who has a background in interior design and restoration work.

Her plans to breathe new life into the pub will be discussed by members of Norwich City Council's planning committee on Thursday next week.

The city council has had 20 comments in support of the proposal, with supporters welcoming the potential return of a pub which is 'sorely missed' by the local community.

The paper, through our Love Your Local campaign, urged people to use their pubs, or risk losing them.

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