Deptford's getting a new local pub at The Job Centre

By Beth Allcock on May 22, 2014 8:30 AM |

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Deptford's newest landlord Rob Burrows is quizzed by a passer-by while standing outside his new pub.

The venue? A former government building and Utrophia art space in Deptford High Street. Its new name will be, in a nod to its roots, The Job Centre.

The resident, James Riley, says it will be "interesting" to see what the new Antic-owned drinking hole will bring to the patch of south east London and its impact upon ongoing gentrification.

"What I really hope is it will be a real local boozer that will incorporate the existing community as well as drawing in new clientele," he added.

Holly Simpson, in charge of PR and promotions for pub company Antic, said the 26-year-old's comments were typical of the mini-buzz that's been sparked surrounding the pub's opening early next month.

"We can't come soon enough," she said.

"It's really exciting. There are definitely people out there who want a 'local', judging by social media.

"Antic is very much known for finding gems in the rough, shall we say, and finding a venue that other people have overlooked in the past, like the Royal Albert [New Cross].

"Deptford was next on the horizon because of its creative community."

Rob, who lived in the area before moving to Camberwell, said: "It's a nice quirky part of Deptford.

"I'm really excited to come back to the area, I've missed it.

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"The sign of a good pub is when you have a range of people in there and this is here for the community."

Scheduled to open in the next few weeks, pub-goers can expect a vintage, '80s style drinking space stretched over three floors.

There'll be a bar and open kitchen whipping up modern British grub downstairs, with bathroom facilities on the second floor and a community space and bar area on the top floor.

Rob said: "There will be a decent selection of artisan craft beers and we will be using as many local stuff as we can.

"We will differentiate ourselves from the Albert, that being a Victorian pub. We might be more spirit-led.

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"We would like to do infusion spirits but the particular infusions we haven't nailed it down - we are only going to have the good stuff in there."

Amid a backdrop of pub closures - the Deptford Arms falling victim in the same area - the chain also responsible for the Isle of Dogs' Pepper St Ontiod is going strong.

Rob, who will be heading a team of 12, said it was down to traditional values. "If there's someone behind the bar who seems happy to serve, that's something that never changes through the years."

Dale Ingram, specialist planning consultant at Planning For Pubs Ltd, said: "Antic has a great reputation for bringing dead pubs back to life and converting other premises to pub use.

"A well-run community pub is an asset to any neighbourhood and can often be the reason why people buy property in a particular area, especially affluent younger professionals.

"Conversely, the loss of a much-loved local can be why people move away, leading to a downward spiral in house prices."

Go to jobcentrepub.com.