Mark Foster, the man who converted the empty Allied Irish Bank into the Manor House, has explained what led to the rebranding and the eventual reopening of the pub which took place over the weekend. He writes:
There has been plenty of questions and speculation on what’s been happening with The Manor House so it’s time to clarify.
It’s been a challenging few months for many industries. Hospitality is one that was hit particularly hard. With forced closure and no funding available, the business running the pub failed to survive and the staff, who were all furloughed, were made redundant.
There was a possibility of the doors being closed permanently. Thankfully that isn’t the case.
The name change didn’t need to happen but it’s the right time to reset. The venue has been a pub since it opened in 2014 but its name has often meant people expected something else or thought it had a lofty opinion of itself. It’s a pub. It has been from the start and The Bull firmly underlines that, with a little nod to the roaming cattle from Wanstead’s past.
As for the team that work there, the business is smaller due to where we are in the covid-19 situation and therefore the staff numbers are too. The offering is a little different from before. The menu will be changing to what’s been in place previously and now there is more focus on table service due to the virus risk mitigation processes that we’ve put be in place so the skills required change too.
Absolutely, there will be some familiar faces from the old pub that have helped it deliver previously and we look forward to seeing you soon. This has been incredibly tough for all pubs and the High Street as a whole. Hopefully we’re getting to the other side of it, good luck to all.
Thank you for all your nominations for the Wanstead Lockdown Awards. We are proud to present the following, and on behalf of all readers and the Wanstead Society express our appreciation to all those who are named – and others who remain nameless but whose service has helped in this difficult period.
We’ve been overwhelmed by the number of nominations for the Wanstead Lockdown Awards, a scheme to say thank you to all those who have gone out of their way in service of the community which we are running jointly with the Wanstead Society.
Nobody will be surprised by this announcement from the organisers of the Wanstead Fringe:
2020 is a year like no other, and inevitably that means the Wanstead Fringe just isn’t going to be possible. So, like Glastonbury, we’re thinking of this as a fallow year and hope to be back in 2021, bigger and better than ever.
Having said that, we are cherishing the glimmer of a faint hope that one single special event might be feasible… we’ll be sure to let everyone know if it’s going to happen.
Thanks to all our supporters, participants, sponsors and volunteers over the past seven years. Here’s hoping we can do it all again in September 2021.
Now that life is gradually getting back to normal, we thought it was time to mark the excellent Wanstead folk who have made an outstanding contribution to community life over the past three months.
So Wansteadium and our friends at the Wanstead Society are inviting you to nominate individuals or groups who have gone the extra mile to look out for their fellow citizens or who have helped the community in imaginative or thoughtful ways.
We will announce the winners next week – so please make your nominations below. Please tell us why you are nominating someone – describing the contribution they have made.