Today's Norwich Pub of the Week is the Nelson at the Premier Inn opposite the train station in Prince of Wales Road, which is just about to undergo a new branding
PUBLISHED: 21:57 03 February 2012
It's a pub already to its customers, but not enough people know it, so the Nelson in Prince of Wales Road is about to get a new branding.
Manager Hayley Alderton said she wants customers to use it as a normal pub and the signage outside will soon reflect that.
She’s been general manager since September last year, but has worked at the Premier Inn hotel for two years.
She has been working for Whitbread, which owns the Table Table and Premier Inn brands, for 11 years, and was previously at the Table Table pub/restaurant at the Norfolk Showground in Costessey.
She said: “I’m currently redeveloping the signage to tell people that we are a local pub/restaurant. I have been given permission by head office to go a bit off-brand.
“We want to press home the name Nelson pub/restaurant and get away from the hotel pub/restaurant stigma, and everyone thinking that we are just for hotel residents.
“At present, our customer base is about 60-40 in favour of hotel guests, but we want to reverse that.
“People walk past thinking that the pub is just for hotel residents, but we are as much a pub as the Compleat Angler across the road.
“We are open to everyone, whether they want to chill out or just have a drink. You don’t have to have a meal. We are very much open to the public and everyone is treated the same.” As the Evening News’ Love your Local campaign, which aims to get people back into pubs, has highlighted, pubs are very much more than just places to eat or drink.
And Ms Alderton added: “We do get the community involved here. We let organisations use the building for meetings and church groups meet here every Sunday for free, and we also get book clubs.
“And on Norwich City match days we are packed.”
Pubs may be closing at the rate of 16 a week nationwide, but the future at the Nelson is looking good.
She said: “We are not doing too badly. We have noticed the slow-down, but I think it’s harder for independent pubs. Because we have the marketing and sales backing from Whitbread, it’s easier for us.
“I don’t think pubs will disappear. I feel like the landlady of a pub. I love the social aspects of it, and love chatting to regulars.”
To see more stories from our Love your Local campaign visit www.eveningnews24.co.uk/loveyourlocal.