Three Northampton pubs to have £1.3 million overhaul ahead of new university campus and council headquarters

The Shipmans
The Shipmans
  • Funds will come from group of wealthy investors who expect to double their stakes
  • Planned county council HQ and uni campus key to decisions
  • First refurbishment will be finished by Christmas

Three pubs in Northampton will have £1.3m spent on refurbishments to make them more appealing to foodies.

The Shipmans, in The Drapery, The Eastgate, in Abington Street, and The Frog and Fiddler in Harborough Road will all be overhauled in a staggered scheme of work by McManus Group.

For a long time the town centre was ‘over-pubbed’ but I think it’s an opportune time to invest.

Finance director Chris Wright

The refurbishment of the latter two pubs is the first significant investment by the company in Northampton town centre for about 20 years, according to finance director Chris Wright.

He said: “I think the fact that a new uni campus and a county council headquarters are coming has led where we have allocated the money.

“For a long time the town centre was ‘over-pubbed’ but I think it’s an opportune time to invest.

He added: “The theme running through them all is food. That line between pub and restaurant has almost disintegrated these days and all three pubs will push their meals a lot more.”

Funding will come from a group of wealthy investors who hope to double their investment after three years.

The pubs will be transferred into a new company with the same directors called Mcmanus Pub Co.

All three pubs are expected to have their new looks by the end of next year.

The Shipmans, closed since Mcmanus bought it in July 2014, has been stripped and will open before Christmas this year.

Mr Wright said its 1700s character will be retained with craft ales and a beer-themed menu added.

Work will next start on The Eastgate, with the aim of bringing in customers from breakfast to 1am in the morning.

Lastly, The Frog and Fiddler will have its kitchen overhauled.