The Bulls Head in Barnes, which has been hosting music since 1959 (clip above is of the Humphrey Lyttelton Band from 1998) will have a new leaseholder from July 1st, Geronimo Inns. The venue will then close for 3-4 months while it undergoes a complete refurb.
The current leaseholder, Dan Fleming, now 72, is to retire. With his wife Liz and their sons, he has run the pub and is famous music room since 1982. The lease has been bought by Geronimo Inns, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Young & Co.'s Brewery, P.L.C, which is run with as an autonomous business from Young's head office in Wandsworth.
The music room remains, and bookings for bands - as previously - are currently being taken from November 1st. "Part of the deal is that the jazz will continue," Dan Fleming told me today.
Audiences are not always easy to draw to the Bull. From my memories of dealing with the noise complaint issue in 2005, the residents of Barnes always say that they rather like the idea of having a music pub in their midst, but audiences tend to come from further afield.
Dan Fleming told us that Geronimo Inns are planning an open meeting at the Bull in the next few weeks with customers and musicians to explain what is likely to happen. More info on that when we have it.
Geronimo run other music venues - the Elgin for example, and from the evidence of what happened with the Half Moon in Putney, as Dan Fleming stressed on the phone to me today, Geronimo can through its actions demonstrate a clear commitment to upholding the tradition of the music pubs.
UPDATE 22 MAY. Gerononimo Inns tell us that they will be putting out a press statement next week, and the meeting referred to above will be on June 3rd at 6 30pm, at the Bull.
Programme at thebullshead.com - Twitter @bullsheadlive
FOR MORE INFORMATION SEE OUR FOLLOW-UP POST