Historic Norwich pub reopens after refurb

The Edith Cavell bar in Tombland which is re-opening. Picture: Denise Bradley

The Edith Cavell bar in Tombland which is re-opening. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant copyright 2011

It’s a prime location in the heart of historic Norwich, but for more than 18 months no pints have been pulled at the former Edith Cavell pub.

This is in spite of the Tombland pub receiving a major refit by owner Enterprise Inns about a year ago.

But two Norwich businessmen have decided to test the waters again and reopen it under the name Cavell’s on Wednesday.

Ben Edwards, who has taken over the pub with business partner Phil Tompkins, said: “It was available and we bought the lease. We thought it was a prime opportunity.

“It’s my first pub as landlord but Bill’s been in the trade for about 30 years, since he left school.

“The pub was refurbished by Enterprise Inns, so we have just been dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s. “We are getting excited as the opening day approaches.

“We are hoping that we can make a success of it. We will be open from 9am for breakfast, and will have daytime and evening menus, and upstairs will become a proper dining area. We will be open all day and hope it will be a success.”

The pub bears the name of Norfolk’s famous war heroine, Edith Cavell, who was shot by a firing squad in 1915 for helping British and Allied soldiers escape from German-occupied Belgium. The Swardeston-born nurse is buried in the grounds of Norwich Cathedral and a statue of her stands on Tombland near the pub.

The pub had previously been called the Army and Navy Stores from 1879 before taking on the name Edith Cavell in 1981. It changed its name to Coles in 2005 before reverting back to the Edith Cavell in 2008.

The Evening News has been urging people to return to pubs in our Love your Local campaign.

Tell us what’s happening at your local? Call David Bale on 01603 772427 or email

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