Blanc cheque Pub in full gallop to reopen ahead of festival
ACOMPANY founded by chef Raymond Blanc is transforming a closed down Gloucestershire pub and is planning ahead for Cheltenham Gold Cup week 2020.
Residents in Prestbury believe the new-look Kings Arms could be open in time for Christmas after old furniture from the pub was taken out and put in skips as renovation work continues.
An application has now been made to Cheltenham Borough Council for the High Street venue to open from 8am to 1am during next March’s Cheltenham National Hunt Festival from Tuesday, March 10 to Friday, March 13.
A planning application has already been approved by planners which suggests the Kings Arms would be marketed as a pub/brasserie.
The application from The White Brasserie Company, Teddington, London, sought permission to replace the side entrance porch with French doors, replacement of rooflights and internal alterations.
Now, the company wants to “provide for a start time of 8am and a finish time of 1am for the supply of alcohol and late-night refreshment during Gold Cup week.”
Works currently under way will see the rear lobbied entrance replaced with French doors to create a more open feel between the customer dining area and the paved external courtyard garden. The pub and restaurant had previously been a Crown Carvery, under the umbrella of Mitchells & Butlers, the company behind the renovation of the Harvester restaurant in Cheltenham’s The Brewery Quarter into a Son of Steak diner. The White Brasserie Company describes its pubs as “warm and welcoming with a unique combination of a traditional pub serving French brasserie food with an English twist. Something a little different, somewhere reassuringly familiar.”
It has 19 other pubs, including The Black Horse in Thame, Oxfordshire, and The King’s Head in Teddington, London.
The Kings Arms closed because the building needed major structural works, permission for which has already been granted. According to Birmingham-based Mitchells & Butlers, the west wall of the timber frame was at significant structural risk, and needed to be stabilised, work which began back in May.
Motorists had been able to use all of the pub’s car park free since its closure but part of it will be unavailable during the renovation work.
Raymond Blanc, 69, has an OBE, and is the chef patron at the Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons which is a double Michelin starred restaurant and is a regular on TV cooking shows.
Raymond Blanc (left) hopes to reopen The Kings Arms, Prestbury, by Christmas, in good time for next year’s Gold Cup.