New owners return to spruce up popular local pub
When Amble businessman Nigel Wilson heard that the Mason’s Arms was up for sale last year, he decided to buy it. After all, he’d had experience of running a pub 15 years ago. And that pub was the Mason’s Arms.
“When it came back on the market and I said I was interested, everyone said I was mad. Pubs are not as good business as they were 15 years ago” said Nigel.
But he and his partner Amanda have worked non-stop, redecorating, restyling and adding new interest, for the regulars and to attract new customers.
“We’ve been steadily building it back up; we’ve redecorated throughout, refurbished the toilets and everywhere is now light and fresh. We’re converting the upstairs to four en-suite bedrooms for Bed and Breakfasts,” they will be ready before Christmas said Nigel.
“Amble’s definitely on the up” said Amanda.” That’s one of the reasons we decided to offer Bed and Breakfast. We’re also offering food as well. There are some really good places to eat in Amble now, and we didn’t want to compete with the others, we wanted to fit in with them. We decided to do ‘proper pub grub’.”
Food is available Wed, Thurs, Fri 12-2.30 and 4.30 -7pm and Saturdays 12-7pm, when they offer Soup of the Day and a crusty roll plus a selection of Amble Butcher’s pies, served with mash, peas and lashings of gravy. On the first Sunday of each month Amanda makes traditional Sunday lunch priced at £6.95.
Real Ale is now available, including Credence Pale from the new brewery in Amble, and the pair have plans to extend the bar after Christmas, which will make room for more real ales.
“We have five local staff, four have been with us since we opened nearly a year ago the other member of our Team we have recently employed 30 hours a week coinciding with our new opening hours. During the refurbishment trades people have been local,” said Amanda. “We’ve gone out of our way to use local trade’s people, and source local food and Real Ale.”
Next are plans to convert an unused room into a family room, so parents and children can enjoy games and bar facilities in a more relaxed, family –friendly environment.
The whole week is pretty busy now in the Mason’s. Monday is dominoes night; Tuesday has Happy Hour from 5-8pm and then ladies darts, while Wednesday is the popular pool night which now has two teams.
Thursday at 9pm is Quiz night; this has become so popular the last one had nine teams competing. Friday is men’s darts night, there’s a free jukebox on Saturday nights, and free pool on Sundays. The function room is available for bookings free of charge.
And of course the pub is home to the famous Amble Leek Club; photos of past winners (mostly Peter Griffiths) adorn the walls in the bar.
This year Amanda is offering Christmas lunch, £38.50 for adults, £25 for children. Please ring 01665 799279 to book. You can also find them on Facebook.