Ipswich: Steamboat Tavern saved for live music

A landlady with a reputation for championing up and coming musicians has stepped in to secure the future of a key music venue in town.

Val Bint, who has two decades of experience running pubs and supporting bands and singers, has bought the Steamboat Tavern from owners Greene King.

She has been running the historic pub, in New Cut West, close to the main Waterfront regeneration area, and next to Felaw Maltings, for several years and under her leadership it has become a popular venue for musicians and music fans.

“This is a pub for the live music community of Ipswich and Suffolk,” said Val. “People come here from a wide area. The town needs live music venues.”

And she said the main reason behind her decision to buy the pub was her mission to protect its status as a music mecca.


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“You could say I have secured the pub for live music. It is the way I have taken it here. I made a wish to buy The Steamboat – and it came true.”

Val continued: “Purchasing any commercial property especially, I suspect, a pub, is a scary prospect and securing the finance is definitely not to be dealt with by ‘amateurs’.”

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She has been in the pub and entertainment business for more than 20 years, and previously ran the now demolished Earl Kitchener in Cox Lane, Ipswich.

The Steamboat, and its driven landlady, has supported both developing and established talent; rock, folk, blues and jazz.

“There have been some great ones like Underline the Sky who are doing well and gone to the V Festival, and Ed Sheeran of course,” said Val.

“There are a lot of other talented people in the town who have been playing good music many years and they are still great at doing it.”

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