New licensee takes on The Derry in Long Newton

New licensee takes on The Derry in Long Newton

Residents of Long Newton are delighted that a new licensee has taken on The Derry and that it is open again following a three-month closure. Prior to taking on The Derry, Chris Driver, 33, was General Manager at the Talbot in Bishopton, a gastropub where professional Master Chef finalist Danny Parker began his career. Chris had worked at the pub restaurant for 15 years, following graduation from Teeside University where he did a degree in Hotel & Catering Management.

Chris is running The Derry as a family-friendly local offering top quality food. He also plans to turn the pub’s caravan park into an up-market glamping site with special guest pods, and to erect a permanent marquee for weddings, parties, local events and a Christmas market.

Since taking on the lease, Chris has transformed the pub’s interior ensuring it has a cosy country feel with a roaring fire and sofas in the lounge for fireside drinks as well as barista-style coffees and cakes. We have also installed a new kitchen to enable the pub to establish a reputation for excellent food and cater for the 70 covers. Outside, there is also a children’s play area.

Ingredients are all fresh and locally sourced from suppliers such as Hodsons of Hartlepool for seafood, Bolams of Sedgefield for meat and an extensive wine list from House of Townend.  The pub also offers real ales, guest ales, and a gin and tonic menu designed by Fever Tree.

As a result of Chris’s plans for the pub, 20 jobs have been created including four chef positions.

The father of 9 month old twins said: “It’s been quite a year: The birth of our gorgeous twins and now my new baby – The Derry. “I could see The Derry’s potential immediately.  It is a great looking building in a lovely village.  Its location across the road from the church means its also ideal for weddings.  In the meantime, our first event is Halloween.  We’ve got an inflatable disco dome lined up for a children’s Halloween party on 29th October. It’s free to attend and there’ll be a witch hunt, crepes and ice creams and burgers to keep everyone happy.  We’ve also booked a band for bonfire night. All the food we serve will be classic and done really well. The pies for example will have pastry all the way around rather than a lid.  We’ll have fresh beer batter, homemade burgers and lasagne. We’ll also have a great selection of cakes on display in our Derrycatessen. We’ve only been open a few days but have been made to feel really welcome by locals.  It’s a great start. So thank you to everyone and especially to my wife, Sarah, for her support.”

Star Pubs & Bars Managing Director Lawson Mountstevens said: “Chris is ideally suited to take on The Derry. He established an excellent reputation at The Talbot, which I feel sure he’ll do at The Derry.  Its location in a great village just off the A66 coupled with Chris’s experience and vision will transform its fortunes and be somewhere the village can be proud of.”