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New landlord 'will rebuild pub reputation'
Published 02/03/13

THE new landlord of the Queen Victoria pub in Henley says the “bad old days” are gone.

Nick Cobb is seeking to rebuild the pub’s poor reputation and instead create a welcoming environment.

He re-opened the pub on Thursday last week, less than a week after it was closed suddenly by Simon Rolls and his partner Renee Ansell.

The couple had only been behind the bar since December and changed the name from the Victoria in a bid to restore the Enterprise Inns pub’s reputation.

But they had to give it up suddenly and return to Mr Rolls’ parents’ pub in St Mary’s Butts, Reading, due to family illness.

Mr Cobb, 39, formerly ran River and Latinos nightclub in Hart Street with his father Mike, who is landlord of the Bull in Bell Street.

He also ran the Prince of Wales in Caversham with his partner Lesley Courtney until he was diagnosed with cancer.

Mr Cobb said: “Now I have been given a relatively clean bill of health, I wanted to get back into the swing of things.

“Lesley is the driving force and once we got the nod from Enterprise Inns that this place was available, she desperately wanted to get me back into what I love doing.

“She has supported me emotionally and financially and because she works from home she will help me out, although I will do the bulk of the shifts.”

Mr Cobb, who has two daughters with Ms Courtney, said he was excited and quietly confident about his new venture.

He added: “The bad old days will not return — I have had a chat with the neighbours and I have got a zero tolerance policy to drugs and bad behaviour.

“At the Prince we took a similar stance, so if people want to come out for a good time they are more than welcome.

“It is going to take a while but we want to offer a warm and friendly welcome. I want to put my mark on the place.”

The pub was previously closed following complaints by police of licence breaches.

Published 02/03/13

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