'We've lost £300,000': Bar owner slams £1,000 grant 'insult'

(L-R) Glen Carr and Jonathan Carr who both run Bedfords Bar in Norwich Picture: Supplied

(L-R) Glen Carr and Jonathan Carr who both run Bedfords Bar in Norwich Picture: Supplied - Credit: Archant

The owner of Bedfords Bar in Norwich has branded the prime minister's announcement of £1,000 grants for wet pubs "a complete insult" and said it would not even cover his electricity bill. 

Bars and pubs in Norfolk that do not serve food are unable to reopen from today (December 2) under Tier Two restrictions and Boris Johnson announced on Tuesday that each would receive a one-off payment of £1,000. 

But remaining shut was not an option for Bedfords Bar owner Glen Carr, who runs the venue with wife Karen and son and manager Jonathan, and he has spent thousands on an outdoor kitchen with pizza ovens.

Karen, Glen and Jonathan Carr who run Bedfords Bar in Norwich Picture: Supplied

Karen, Glen and Jonathan Carr who run Bedfords Bar in Norwich  - Credit: Archant

Norwich-based Brick Pizza will be supplying its Margherita, vegan and pepperoni frozen pizzas, which will be cooked on site, and fries and salad will also be available.

The bar will be open Thursdays and Fridays from 5pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 2pm and at the weekend there will be bottomless prosecco and pizza, which applies to both, from 3pm to 5pm for £30pp. 

A Margherita from Brick Pizza in Norwich, which will be served at Bedfords Bar. 

A Margherita from Brick Pizza in Norwich, which will be served at Bedfords Bar. - Credit: George Colley

While household groups will be able to sit indoors, outside there is a large marquee for mixed groups of up to six and patio heaters will be coming next week. 

But Mr Carr has slammed the government for its lack of financial support for bars and pubs, after being given just a week to adapt the venue to comply with Tier Two restrictions.  

Mr Carr said: "I've just spent £3,000 on an outdoor kitchen because of the restrictions and this year I have been on tenterhooks every minute the pub is open.

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"As a small, independent business we have had to stand tall and adapt so that we can trade.

Jonathan Carr from Bedfords Bar in Norwich Picture: James Randle.

Jonathan Carr at Bedfords Bar in Norwich, which will be reopening and serving food.  - Credit: Archant

"I have lost £300,000 this year and if we don't open in December, Bedfords Bar will disappear and it has been an institution in Norwich for over seventy years.

"For Boris to come out and give wet pubs £1,000 is a complete insult and another blow to our industry -  it wouldn't even cover my electricity bill and would be no help at all."

Book a table by emailing jonathan@bedfordsbar.co.uk




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