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Landmark Broads pub set for revival

PUBLISHED: 11:30 25 May 2011

The Pontiac Roadhouse.

The Pontiac Roadhouse.

EDP pics © 2006

One of Great Yarmouth’s best-known pubs looks set to be brought back to life after its purchase by a mystery buyer.

Located halfway along the A47 Acle Straight, the former Pontiac Roadhouse has one of the most distinctive locations in the county, being the only business motorists pass for miles between Norwich and Great Yarmouth.

However, for the past two years, the watering hole and restaurant - once popular with boaters on the River Bure as well as drivers - has been boarded up.

Marketed at a guide price of £250,000, it failed to find a buyer at a William H Brown auction in Norwich earlier this month, but a purchaser has now stepped forward following the sale.

A spokesman for William H Brown said: “It has been bought by an East Anglian company who have a number of properties. They are undecided what to do with it at the moment but it is most likely it will reopen as a pub or restaurant.”

Once a popular pub called the Stracey Arms, it has had a chequered time over the past decade, becoming the Three Feathers before its rebrand as an American-style bar and grill in 2002.

Since 2006 when its then parent company went into administration it has been closed more than open, enjoying a fleeting renaissance as a Chinese takeaway in 2009.

Barbara Greasley, chairman of the Broads Tourism Forum and director of hire boat firm Norfolk Broads Direct, described it as “brilliant news” that the eaterie was likely to reopen.

She said: “We are very pleased to hear the news. We need high quality eating establishments and we will be encouraging the owners to join the Broads quality charter scheme.”

After receiving a number of complaints from holidaymakers, she urged all restaurants with moorings to consider waiving charges if boaters stopped for a meal.

Peter Horsefield, chairman of the Broads Society, said a good family restaurant - but not too upmarket in these straitened times - might prove successful.

However, he said one of the obstacles it faced was the decline in river traffic since the pub’s heyday.

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