Tuesday, 22 June 2021

Locals celebrate re-opening of pub

A PUB which had to close after a fire on Christmas Eve has re-opened.

The Griffin in Church Road, Caversham, was packed with customers on its first new day of trading on Saturday.

Rob Wilson, MP for Reading East, led a ribbon-cutting ceremony with Caversham borough councillor Andrew Cumpsty.

The pub was shut for almost six weeks following the blaze, which is thought to have been caused by an electrical fault.

The fire destroyed the bar and the ceiling above it collapsed. It also caused heavy smoke damage.

The Spirit Pub Company, which owns the Griffin, has redecorated the premises and replaced all the furniture. Landlady Anne Marie McCarthy, who lives above the pub with her husband Colum, said: “It was brilliant to see the pub looking so busy. All our regulars were back and everybody is so pleased that we’re open again.”

Mr Wilson said: “It is a day of celebration for the whole community. It is as if the fire never happened. I always love coming into the Griffin as Anne Marie gives such a great welcome.”

Three fire crews attended the blaze when it broke out at 5.30am. No one was hurt.

Customers with Christmas Day bookings were given refunds or accommodated at the company’s other pubs.

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