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Norwich set to get another 'Fat Cat'

The Cider Shed pub being relaunched as The Fat Cat Brewery Tap. Landlords Mark White and Laura Hedley.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

The Cider Shed pub being relaunched as The Fat Cat Brewery Tap. Landlords Mark White and Laura Hedley. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

© ARCHANT NORFOLK 2011

A popular Norwich pub is reopening tomorrow with a different name and look - but with an appeal that will be familiar to real ale lovers across the city.

The former Cider Shed in north Norwich, which has been closed for about a month, has been renamed the Fat Cat Brewery Tap, after the Fat Cat, which is one of the city’s most popular pubs.

Both pubs are owned by Colin Keatley, whose nephew Mark White and his fiancée Laura Hedley have taken over the new pub, which has been refurbished inside to resemble the West End Street pub.

And the currently green Lawson Road pub will be painted the traditional black and gold Fat Cat colours when the weather is better.

The new pub will sell real ales brewed at the adjacent brewery and it will continue to host live music on Fridays and Sundays.

The new landlords said running a pub was a departure for them after moving from London where they were both TV producers.

Miss Hedley worked on the Alan Titchmarsh show while her boyfriend worked on daytime TV shows such as Trisha, the Jeremy Kyle and Jerry Springer shows.

But Mr White, 29, said running a pub had always been a dream for him, especially as a lot of his family already run pubs and his grandfather once ran the Roundhouse in London’s Covent Garden.

He said: “Pubs are in my family’s blood. Obviously, my uncle Colin owns the Fat Cat in Norwich, but my other uncle John owns the Fat Cat in Ipswich and other family members also have pubs in East Anglia.

“The new pub is basically another Fat Cat, but it’s not a franchise.

“Our main aim is to make the enjoyment of real ale more widespread in Norwich.”

Miss Hedley, 28, said: “The new pub is basically ‘Fat Cat 2’ in the Silver Triangle. It’s a massive change for us but we are determined to ensure that it becomes the locals’ ‘local’ again.”

The pub was purpose-built in the early 1970s and was previously known as The Wherry.

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

To see more stories from the campaign visit www.eveningnews24.co.uk/loveyourlocal.

Do you know of a new pub coming to Norwich? Call David Bale on 01603 772427 or email david.bale2@archant.co.uk.

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