Friday 14 June 2024
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West Bridgford’s Stratford Haven celebrates 25th anniversary

West Bridgford pub Stratford Haven celebrated a milestone anniversary this month.

Affectionately known as The Strat – the popular West Bridgford pub first opened its doors  25 years ago on 17 May.

It soon established itself as a firm favourite with locals, as well as  welcoming thousands of visitors over the years in the city for cricket at Trent Bridge and  football at the City and County grounds. 

Castle Rock, local brewery and pub group, opened the ‘Stratford Haven’ in 1999  following a competition to name the pub.

Managing Director, Colin Wilde remembers  ‘The Bread & Lard’ had also been a strong contender, a nod to West Bridgford’s old  nickname, ‘Bread and Lard Island’. Castle Rock still has the original handwritten letter  from Kay Tomlinson – aged 81 at the time – with various name suggestions, including the winning ‘Stratford Haven’.  

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Before that, the pub had been a pet shop. A memory that Tom Eccles, General Manager at the Stratford Haven shared: 

“I used to walk past the pet shop going to and from school as a kid. And for the last  nearly twenty years, here I am, making the same journey! There’s a lot for me to  celebrate personally, I’ve made so many friends and happy memories over the years at  this pub. Not to mention the countless crazy match days and the unforgettable  Christmas Eves.” 

For Castle Rock’s Operations Director, Vicki Saxby, the Strat’s 25th birthday has a  particular significance. She commented: 

“The Stratford Haven has a special place in my heart. I started my career there when it  first opened, and my time there showed me what a great pub looked like. It set the bar.  Lots of us here at Castle Rock have a similar story, starting in one of the pubs and  working our way up.

“The standard just gets higher as the years go on and this milestone  is so encouraging. I think it shows we’re doing the right things, taking pride in what we do  and caring about our customers, our pubs and our people. I hope if we continue always  trying to be the best we can be, we’ll be celebrating many more birthdays for years to  come!” 

Serving a variety of quality cask and keg beer, the Stratford Haven is renowned for its  welcoming feel, homemade and hearty food, traditional snug area and bright and sunny  beer garden.  

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