Wetherspoons confirms The George is ‘under offer’

A spokesman for Wetherspoons has confirmed to Wansteadium that The George pub in Wanstead is under offer to another pub chain. Rumours have been circulating on social media throughout Friday about the news but this is the first confirmation that the news is correct.

The chain did not say who the prospective owner was, but the rumours are that it would convert the George into a gastropub.

The development took customers and even people working elsewhere in hospitality in Wanstead by surprise. Wetherspoons has however divested itself of other pubs in the past few months, including the Last Post in Loughton, so it is not unprecedented.

Ironically Wetherspoons boss Tim Martin told Sky News on Friday that the company was to increase the number of its pubs by 20%, as the company reported growing profits.

The George dates back to the 1700s, and the current building was completed in 1903.

Reader JanetPlanet adds:

I have emailed JDW to say what a loss this would be to the area. May not make much impact but just to register what a treasure this pub is to Wanstead: Have heard that The George is under offer. Please withdraw! This is the best pub in East London. It is such a grand pub which is an important hub for all age groups. I love that in a posh area, this pub is accessible to all due to it prices. You see older folk at breakfast, people that lunch, last-day-of-school teens in the summer, exam result get-togethers, family celebrations, weekenders, intimate chats, and not to mention – a really convenient station pub to meet folk. You are the last bastion of working class culture. Wanstead needs you. I feel sure that this is a pub in profit. Your staff are well-trained and the building is welk maintained. You would be such a loss to the area.

26 thoughts on “Wetherspoons confirms The George is ‘under offer’”

  1. Well said Janet. It is part of my nose older son’s heritage and coming of age. I hope the new buyers
    Do their homework as Wanstead is a desolate place at night Overpriced and underwhelming food You always knew there would be atmosphere in The George as it was the only place most people could afford. Mark my words ther will be more restaurants go to the wall in Wanstead over the coming months. Why pay inflated prices in Wanstead when you can travel 20 mins on the tube into the West End and either pay the same or cheaper and have atmosphere

    1. So true, we rarely eat out in Wanstead anymore. Much prefer getting on the tube and you don’t even need to go as far as the West End, Spitalfields is great for choice and any budget.

    2. The George has its place as a community pub .Good good and affordable drinks ..It needs a bit of a refurbishment.However I do not agree with that the local restaurants are overpriced ..They are family businesses not chains and pay the overheads to operate in Wanstead .So support them or we will have empty shops

  2. There are about three dozen eating/drinking places on or very near Wanstead High Street. This is the one which is affordable with plenty of space to meet friends, different atmosphere upstairs and downstairs. People on their own don’t have to feel uncomfortable. We need The George. Those who feel too grand to go there have plenty of choices. More businesses will go to the wall if this closure happens. WHY is it even being considered?

    1. The George is a fabulous pub and truly accessible to all. At a time when everyone is struggling financially, JDW have provided a superb venue for years that allow an everyone a safe space to socialise. It will be a travesty to lose it and I would be very sad to see it leave the high street.

    2. The George is not closing down; BUT,it’s no longer going to be a Wetherspoons pub… which is the bad news… so no more affordable food and drink… I can’t understand it because it’s always packed and I’d have thought Tim Martin would know it’s one of the best of his left in East London… so sad The Picture House closed, now this.

  3. Problem is it’s nothing to do with JDW the lease is owned by Alan Sugar who has obviously been offered more from another chain.

    1. If Wetherspoons have a lease on the pub it is nothing to do with Alan Sugar. If someone has offered an inflated price for the the lease it is up to Wetherspoons to consider the offer and accept o r.refuse it. It is a business decision.

        1. How is it ‘coming to an end?’ Manager was telling customers last night there was still six years remaining on it. If Wetherspoons have been made a h good offer on a short lease the it is a business proposal that will be considered in usual way. What I would expect is Wetherspoons have a following there and I would not be surprised if the opened up somewhere within easy reach or enhanced their other pubs nearby .like the Walnut Tree which is a few bus stops away.

      1. The lease is coming to an end hence it will be up for the highest bidder. Alan Sugar owns the freehold
        He can lease to whoever he wants

  4. Gutted that our beautiful George pub will be closing. Been a huge part of Wanstead for decades, I have been going to the George for 40 years, many celebrations and special memories. Yet again money and greed trumps what the average person loves

    1. All four of my children bought their dad a pint when they were 18 years old.it is a shame our grandchildren will not be able to continue with this tradition when they are of age. We love The George and it is the only place we can afford to eat and drink with family and friends. It is such a shame if sold to a different chain and such a loss to Wanstead.

  5. Before criticising either Wetherspoons or Alan Sugar would be helpful if the facts relating to the lease were known for sure.Publicly available info shows that Amsprop owns the freehold and lets the property to Wetherspoons. What is not clear is whether the lease is coming to an end or there is now a break clause or that Wetherspoons is considering subletting on a lease that still has time to run

  6. WE NEED OUR GEORGE! I am not a pub person, but I DO go to the George very often & regularly. It is used by people of all ages – Mothers & babies Tuesdays, others other days, and it is quality affordable food. Also, whenever I come I feel that I am visiting friends & family, even if only the staff are in the George when I arrive!! PLEASE KEEP OUR GEORGE!!! We do not need a fancy Gastro-pub or anything else, only the WONDERFUL WETHERSPOONS GEORGE which we have!!

  7. Have had a response from JDW. Seem set on proceeding and pulling out of Wanstead. I contacted them via their feedback form on their website if anyone wants to add their voice. Here is their reply:Thank you for taking the time to contact us.
    We can confirm that the George pub is currently on the market however it will continue operating as a Wetherspoon pub until is sold and we very much hope that you will still enjoy the pub until then.
    We understand that you, the pub’s other loyal customers and our dedicated members of staff will be disappointed with this decision, however JD Wetherspoon has made the decision on a commercial basis which we believe is in the best interest of the company as a whole. We hope customers will choose to visit our other pubs in the area.
    We can confirm that staff will be given the opportunity for re-employment at other Wetherspoon pubs in the event that their pub is sold.
    Nonetheless your comments and observations have been noted.
    Thank you again for contacting us and for all your custom at the George. Many thanks,
    Wetherspoon Customer Services
    J D Wetherspoon PLC
    Wetherspoon House | Central Park | Reeds Crescent | Watford |

  8. I emailed JGW with similar sentiments and got the identical reply, as copied above. For the record, I understand JDW have years left on the lease so they must either want to dispose of the George and/or have had a better offer. For those with a genetic anti-Spoons outlook, the George is a good pub and different to many other Wetherspoons pubs. I’m a regular there, I’ve been going there since a teenager (pre-Spoons) and, at the very least, think it will be a huge loss to the area and the social lives of many who can’t afford more expensive places. Rumour is it’s not even going to be a different ‘ordinary’ pub but rather a themed, games pub, as found in the City (darts, mini bowls, axe throwing, etc) and wonder if it will find a market in Wanstead and if it will even be somewhere to go just for a drink. I would readily sign a petition although I doubt it will make any difference, but who knows. Real shame. Enjoy it while it’s still there and hope JDW change their minds.

  9. Due to Wetherspoons’ support for the disastrous Brexit, I have not been in there for many years. I will continue to boycott it and all other Wetherspoons.

Comments are closed.