New future for under-threat pub

The Welcome, junction of Vicarage Lane and Midgeland Road, Marton.

The Welcome, junction of Vicarage Lane and Midgeland Road, Marton.

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A community pub whose future was in doubt just a few years ago is set for a new lease of life as family-based local.

Planning permission was granted in 2009 to bulldoze The Welcome Inn on Vicarage Lane in Marton and replace it with shops, flats and a smaller licensed premises.

But the scheme never went ahead and now the site has been sold by Marston’s to fellow pub chain Greene King.

And Greene King has announced it is making a “substantial investment” to convert the pub into one of its Hungry Horse venues, in a move which will also create around 40 jobs.

The Hungry Horse brand has been built around offering value meals and family-friendly dining.

A Greene King spokeswoman said: “The Welcome Inn will be re-opening as a Hungry Horse in August, bringing around 40 new full and part time jobs to the local area.

“The new and improved pub will have something for all the family to enjoy and we look forward to welcoming customers to this great value, family friendly pub very soon.”

The company declined to put a figure on the level of investment but it has been welcomed by community leaders.

Coun Norman Hardy, whose Hawes Side ward includes The Welcome, said; “No-one likes to see empty buildings so it is good news investment is being made in what is quite a famous local pub in this part of Blackpool.

“I am sure the move 
towards more of a food offer will be welcomed.”