Welwyn Garden City pub naming dropped days before opening

PUBLISHED: 17:03 17 October 2013 | UPDATED: 17:05 17 October 2013

The former Cork pub which is to reopen as the Two Willows

The former Cork pub which is to reopen as the Two Willows


An 11th hour decision has seen a pub firm backtrack on plans to name a refurbished boozer after WGC’s founder – after being told he took a “dim view” of drinking.

The Cork, in Howardsgate, was going to be named after Sir Ebenezer Howard, before the U-turn days before it opened.

The Stonegate Pub Company decided to change the name of the bar, which will pour its first pint tomorrow (Friday), after the WHT contacted them revealing a garden city grandee was unhappy with the moniker.

Dr Dennis Lewis, who organised a recent heritage fair, said: “I think that it is a diabolical liberty to name a drinking establishment after someone who, so far as I know, abstained from alcohol and took a dim view of those who didn’t.”

Former mayor Helen Bromley was also left cold by the re-branding.

She said: “I did speak to the manager and thought it was in very bad taste and wouldn’t be taken well.”

The pub will now be called The Two Willows.

A spokeswoman for the firm said: “After listening to the views of the community in Welwyn we have decided to change the name of the pub to The Two Willows.

“We look forward to welcoming the people of WGC to the pub when it opens this Friday, October 18.”

Roughly £240,000 has been ploughed into the makeover and Stonegate said it will create eight new full-time jobs and four part-time roles.

It has been closed while work was carried out and the pub will be officially re-opened by borough mayor Howard Morgan.

Punters will be able to enjoy a new menu featuring “classic pub favourites” and “an extensive choice of great wines and cocktails”.

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