Well-known pub faces the axe

ONE of Ipswich's best-known pubs is facing demolition this year to make way for leisure facilities as part of the expanding Ipswich Village project.The Drum and Monkey in Princes Street looks set to make way for a bowling alley at the end of the football season.

ONE of Ipswich's best-known pubs is facing demolition this year to make way for leisure facilities as part of the expanding Ipswich Village project.

The Drum and Monkey in Princes Street looks set to make way for a bowling alley at the end of the football season.

The pub is a lively music venue by night and also plays host to football fans from visiting teams at Portman Road.

Before being renamed The Drum and Monkey it was known as The Sporting Farmer for many years.


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Dave West, tenant of the Princes Street pub, said: "The latest I have heard is that the pub will be knocked down and replaced with a bowling alley but definitely not a hotel.

"Nothing has been confirmed but it is on the cards. I have only been here ten months but the regulars who have been here longer have been hearing rumours for years.

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"I don't really mind what happens as the pub is not taking a lot of money at the moment.

"The Punch group owns it and if it goes I will just move on to another pub.

"If the pubs goes it will affect the away fans but they will find somewhere else I am sure. The station hotel will probably benefit."

Terry Holden, of the Ipswich and East Suffolk branch of the Campaign for Real Ale said: "The pub used to be called The Sporting Farmer because the market used to be behind it. I think it was built in the 60s, as it is quite a modern building.

"It has sold real ales but has never been a big seller so the music fans will be more disappointed than real ale drinkers."

Michael Brooks, who used to promote gigs in the town, said the loss of the pub would be a blow to music in the town.

He said: "The Drum and Monkey is a good venue as it is close to the town centre. It is the only place bands can play if they are doing something very small or very large.

"Ipswich's music scene will definitely miss it if it gets knocked down."

N Write in with your memories of The Drum and Monkey or The Sporting Farmer to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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