|The Albert - new real ale venue (again)|
Driving through Downholland the other day, I passed the Scarisbrick Arms. This canalside pub was closed for several years until it was refurbished and reopened 2 or 3 years ago as a pub-restaurant. It sold real ales but was never really successful, at least in pub terms. It has recently been refurbished yet again and has reopened as the Gastro Bar and Grill with no real ales. Although it's been struggling for years, it's still sad to see this local landmark lost as a pub.
Dave Williams tells me that the The Upsteps in Birkdale has been closed for a couple of weeks with a For Sale advertising a business opportunity to be your own boss. I'm not surprised that PubCos are finding it harder to get people to fall for that enticing-sounding line; their reputation increasingly precedes them. I remember our acoustic music sessions in that pub a few years ago, at which time it used to sell Coach House beers regularly, the only Southport pub to do so. As Dave says, "Another pub closure waiting to happen soon I suspect." This leaves the non-real ale Blundell Arms down the road as the only pub currently operating in that part of Birkdale.
The Albert Hotel by Southport station has put real ale on yet again. Good luck to them; I must pop in some time.
Our old Yates's Wine Bar on Lord Street became the Slug and Lettuce, before closing down completely a couple of years ago. It has been reopened as The Sandgrounder Bar, a name I'm surprised hasn't been used before for a pub. It apparently is selling Southport Sandgrounder at £2.20 a pint. I'm told the pub is aimed at the sports-loving drinker with multiple televisions, so my visits are unlikely to be frequent. Still, I'll have a look.