New landlords give first look inside Norwich pub
PUBLISHED: 08:52 14 December 2019 | UPDATED: 08:52 14 December 2019
A couple from London say they are "living the dream" as they restore a city pub to its former glory.
Jason and Julia Carter have more than 35 years experience running pubs, and last week made the move from London to Norwich to reopen the Gibraltar Gardens on Heigham Street, which has been closed since the start of November.
The husband and wife team were offered the job by pub chain Norfolk Table Ltd two weeks ago, and said they "dropped everything" to take on the company's newest venue.
Mr Carter, who is from a family of publicans, said the couple planned to return the pub to its 80s and 90s glory days as a live music venue, and felt optimistic following a soft opening on Thursday night.
He said: "This place is in a different league to anywhere we've been before, it's stunning and we feel privileged to be here.
"Speaking to locals it's clear how much they have missed the pub, and we can't wait to bring back that community feel."
The couple, who rekindled their romance ten years ago at a school reunion, got married in Gibraltar last year, and Mrs Carter said the move felt like fate.
Together with their five-year-old cocker spaniel, Hunter, the pair said they wanted to focus on family-friendly food, as well Friday night pre-club trade.
Mrs Carter said: "We love meeting new characters and if we could sum up what we're going for it would be friendly, homely, community spirit."
The venue will offer daily food deals, including two-for-one pizzas and fish and chips deals, plus a carvery on Sundays.
James Pearce, marketing manager for Norfolk Table, said there were no plans to alter the inside of the pub, other than minor tweaks to the colour scheme and new signage outside.
He said: "While everyone else is winding down for Christmas we're going all guns blazing to get up and running. Gibraltar Gardens is an important place for locals and we think Julia and Jason are the perfect faces for the venue."