Empty pub to provide 'step back in time' after over 18 months of closure

The Alderton Swan pub is set to close on Christmas Eve Picture: GREGG BROWN

The Alderton Swan - Credit: Gregg Brown

A Suffolk village pub closed for over 18 months is set to re-open at Christmas after plans to turn it into a house were shelved. 

The Swan at Alderton has been sold to new owners who have dropped plans to turn it into a home. 

Plans had been submitted to East Suffolk Council to turn the Swan into a residential property after the previous owners struggled to sell it. 

Now, however, bed and breakfast owners Kevin House and Lynda Bezant from Beccles will be moving into the pub and taking it on themselves. 

The couple have never run a pub before but do have experience with accommodation space, which The Swan also boasts. 

They said they had been bolstered by the support they had received so far. 

"There was a fete at Bawdsey and we thought we would go and have a look," said Miss Bezant. 

"Kevin got recognised and everyone came up to us and kept asking if we wanted help." 

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The couple had looked around a number of local pubs before settling on the Swan. 

"We like being in the community really," said Mr House. 

"We already feel really welcome," said Miss Bezant. 

The couple have a number of plans for the pub and have already set about redecorating the building ahead of its re-opening. 

"When you walk back in it will be like stepping back in time," he said. 

Mr House has a collection of Victorian advertising material which he intends to display in the pub to help it feel like customers are back in the 1880s. 

There will also be a slightly more modern addition in the form of a 1960s Wurlitzer jukebox as the couple are keen on the rockabilly scene. 

The pair are looking to open The Swan in stages starting with rental accommodation, then wet sales and finally food, the whole process will take some months to complete.

"We had hoped that we would be able to open over Christmas so that the community has somewhere to go over Christmas," said Miss Bezant. 

"We need to get the building work out of the way."