Irish bar opening in Padiham

John Duignan who is turning the former Kings Arms into an Irish bar called Katy Kelly's.
John Duignan who is turning the former Kings Arms into an Irish bar called Katy Kelly's.

A closed Padiham pub is set to re-open as an Irish themed bar.

Locals have welcomed news that the former Kings Arms, which shutdown almost two years ago, is to be given a new lease of life as Katy Kelly’s.

So far the people of Padiham have been very positive about the pub, they are glad to see it is being re-opened

John Duignan

It is a shot in the arm for Padiham’s pub scene which has seen several close in the last few years with 2014 marking the closure of the 150 year old Alma Inn which closed down when it failed to attract a buyer even way below its £115,000 asking price.

A £50,000 refurbishment began last week and new owner, John Duignan, is hoping the pub will be ready to re-open in around six weeks.

He said: “We have gutted the cellar and carried out a lot of renovation work. So far the people of Padiham have been very positive about the pub, they are glad to see it is being re-opened. I am aware of the history surrounding the pub and I can promise there won’t be any trouble in the future.”

Before it closed the Kings Arms had gained a reputation as something of a trouble spot with fights breaking out in and around the premises regularly.

Aiming for a family atmosphere Mr Duignan said Katy Kelly’s would have at least six real ales on offer. The pub will also offer food and the first floor will be converted into five bedrooms to offer as bed and breakfast accommodation.

This is the second pub Mr Duignan and his wife, Lorraine, have bought in the county. They own Great Harwood’s Pub Royale which is also Irish themed with a range of cask ales. After buying the pub two years ago they re-located to the UK from their native Galway in southern Ireland to run it themselves.

But their links to Burnley date back 15 years when they bought a number of properties in the town they rent out.

Mr Duignan added: “We aren’t tied to any brewery and we are hoping that Katy Kelly’s will attract both local folk and those from out of town.”

The announcement about the new venture comes hot on the heels of the town’s Hare and Hounds pub being named as the Burnley area Pub of the Year by the Campaign for Real Ale. The pub was bought by Yorkshire based EM Inns two years ago and offers six brands of cask ales from local breweries. Run by Stefan and Laura Riley the couple have been credited with turning the pub’s fortunes around.