THE landlord of the award-winning Fishermans Arms says it is “business as usual”, rubbishing rumours he wants to leave the trade.
The popular Headland pub, which is owned by Punch Taverns, has been up for sale throughout Steve Bell’s three-and-a-half year stay as landlord.
But due to the ‘For Sale’ sign going up outside the pub, Steve has been quizzed on numerous occasions on why he is looking to sell-up, with many punters believing he is the owner.
“To be honest the pub has been up for sale throughout our time here,” said Steve, 51 who runs the pub, known as The Fish, with his partner Mandy Jackson, a mum of Emily Whitehead. 15.
“But for us it’s just business as usual. It might get bought it might not, we are not worrying about it at all.”
Punch Taverns confirmed the pub was on the market.
The pub’s punters raised a pint to Steve and Mandy at the weekend as The Fish was presented with its award for being named the Campaign for Real Ale’s (CAMRA) Cleveland pub of the year last month. And Steve admitted he did sit down and do the maths to work out whether it would be financially viable for him to buy the pub himself.
“To support the mortgage and the pub, it just couldn’t happen,” he said.
“If it did I would have bought it.
“But until it does sell we will continue as usual. If somebody does buy it they may well want us to continue to run it anyway.”