Hertfordshire based brewer and multiple pub operator, Farr Brew, has taken on a substantive lease for The Eight Bells in Old Hatfield and is undertaking a joint £230,000 refurbishment with Star Pubs and Bars.
The Eight Bells is the company’s third Star Pubs and Bars lease, with another pub on a temporary management agreement. It also has a further leased pub, two freeholds and a brewery bar.
Meanwhile, funds are being spent to upgrade the exterior to create an outdoor pub garden, and a new kitchen is being fitted inside. The layout is said to be ‘reconfigured’ to increase covers from 27 to 45.
Additionally, Star Pubs and Bars said the new décor will bring the pub up to date, whilst retaining features such as flagstone floors and fireplaces to “maintain the pub’s character”.
The investment is reportedly designed to “broaden the pub’s appeal” by creating a family and dog friendly offering, with locally sourced food and barista style coffees, teas, cakes and snacks.
Additionally, there will reportedly be over 30 wines as well as Farr Brew’s own real ales on tap, and at least 25 gins, alongside premium whiskies and rums.
Farr Brew also intends to leverage the pub’s literary link to Charles Dickens and Oliver Twist and its historical link to Dick Turpin.
Nick Farr, co-founder and director of Farr Brew, said: “My partner Matt Elvidge and I could immediately see the potential of The Eight Bells. Its historic background, location near Hatfield House and opposite the proposed new development in Old Hatfield, and lack of family friendly nearby pubs made the pub an appealing proposition.
“We have expanded rapidly since opening our first pub – opening five pubs in two years. We are looking now to consolidate our estate and grow it steadily and prudently. Our long-term plan is to take on one pub a year. We’re already in preliminary talks with Star Pubs and Bars about another pub.”
Oli Bishop, Star Pubs and Bars Business development manager, added: “We’re delighted to be investing in the Eight Bells with Nick and Matt. They’re well-known, multi award-winning local Hertfordshire operators who have built their business on their passion for beer and excellent service.”