A flagship Burnley brewery pub has closed due to falling trade.
Moorhouse’s Brewery has closed its General Scarlett pub which is situated across the road from its multi-million pound brewery in Accrington Road.
Moorhouse’s managing director David Grant blamed a number of factors including the smoking ban, cheap supermarket alcohol and the “economic blight” of Accrington Road.
He said: “It is with great disappointment we have been forced to close the General Scarlett. Our first pub, we have supported it in recent years, despite substantial losses – more than £50,000 in 2013 alone.
“It will now be mothballed and its future reviewed subject to economic circumstances. While it is very sad to see any local pub close, the harsh facts are that, across the UK, some 20 pubs shut each week in the face of the ailing economy, changing social habits, the smoking ban and cheap supermarket booze.
“The Scarlett is just one more casualty of that adverse climate. With no catering possible and no outside smoking area due to its main road location, it has continually struggled to attract enough customers.”
The news will come as a shock to many pub-goers in Burnley as the award-winning brewery announced record Christmas sales. The brewery saw 500,000 pints sold to yield a healthy uplift of 8% on sales in December. There was also a growth of 55% for special festive beers and 35% for its bottle range, sold through supermarkets.
But, despite this, the General Scarlett has been unable to escape the fate of many local pubs, which have closed in recent years.
“Accrington Road has suffered from economic blight for many years and the loss of trade following the recent closure of the neighbouring Remploy factory, as part of the Government’s austerity measures, was a final body blow that the pub simply couldn’t withstand.
“Regretfully, Moorhouse’s, like any other company, must act when part of the business can’t stand on its own two feet.”
Mr Grant thanked licensee Lynne Murton and staff for their dedicated service over many years. “The pub has been Lynne’s home for several years and we have no wish to see her move, so she will continue to live there for the foreseeable future,” he said.