Popular Ipswich pub and music venue to shut its doors

The Railway pub is shutting its doors Picture: GREGG BROWN

The Railway pub is shutting its doors - Credit: Gregg Brown

A well-known Ipswich pub and music venue has announced that it is to shut its doors following uncertainties caused by the coronavirus.

The Railway pub in Foxhall Road, will not be re-opening as lockdown restrictions ease.

Landlords Steve and Sue Preston made the announcement on Friday.

The couple had been running the pub for the past three years having previously run the Suffolk Punch in Norwich Road and Masons Arms in Woodbridge Road.

Before the couple arrived the pub had been closed for three years.

It was partly the uncertainty over one of the pub’s biggest draws - its music events - that led to the couple’s decision to move on.

“We were doing very well up until lockdown,” said Mr Preston.

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“January and February were the best we had, had.

“However, on the current restrictions, it’s not economically viable.”

Social distancing has also impacted one of the pub’s other big pulls as home to a number of darts teams.

Mr Preston said the decision was disappointing given everything the couple had done to bring the pub back after its extended closure.

“We have done quite a lot of work inside. We started from scratch,” said Mr Preston.

“We have spent over £100,000.

“We have to be realistic about putting more of our own money into it.

“If the business was very profitable we would have looked to hang on longer.”

As well as the financial considerations, Mr Preston is currently shielding due to health conditions, his wife Sue is asthmatic.

For now Mr Preston said the couple were thankful for the fantastic people they had met while running the pub.

“We are going to take time out,” said Mr Preston.

“It’s a shame.”

In the next few months the couple will be arranging refunds on all pre sold event tickets.

In years gone by The Railway made its name as one of the busiest live music venues in Ipswich, even hosting acts such as Status Quo in 1999 and Big Country.