Today’s Pub of the Week feature spotlights the Woolpack in Norwich city centre

Before Prince of Wales Road and Riverside became the hub of Norwich's clubland area, the Woolpack in Golden Ball Street was 'the' place to be.

I remember that on the weekend it was the place in the city where you headed to first or ended up.

While it's no longer the hub of the city's nightlife, it remains an extremely popular pub for revellers at night-times and shoppers and business people at lunchtime.

And that's all right with landlord Michael Gibson, who has been in charge at the pub owned by the Spirit Pub Company, the managed arm of Punch Taverns, for about two years.

'While we are no longer part of the main circuit for people at night, we became one of the best pubs in the company last year, when we made 49pc more profit than the previous year,' he said.

'We are looking to refurbish the property in the future, especially the outside seating area, with umbrellas and heating.'

Mr Gibson has about 10 years' experience in the pub trade.

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He was previously assistant manager at the Rushcutters, in Thorpe St Andrew, managed the Buck, also in Thorpe, and worked at the Gibraltar Gardens in Heigham Street, and the Millhouse in Thorpe. 'I like the pub trade,' he said. 'You can come in every day and meet new people and real characters. I have tried other jobs, working at Sainsbury's and in car insurance, for example, but I like this trade.'

The pub is also now introducing live music on the weekends to cash in on the thriving city scene.

Last week the Brickmakers on Sprowston Road was named the best live music pub in the Great British Pub Awards 2012.

'We are busy at lunchtimes with the middle-aged crowd, builders and business people, and a younger crowd at night times. We are also a great sports pub, and there's a great atmosphere on Norwich City home games,' he added.

The pub has also just changed its menu, introducing a new ranch steak.

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

To see more stories from the campaign visit

Would you like your local to be our next Pub of the Week? Call reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email