Grove Park Baring Hall Hotel pub reopens after community saves it from demolition

Grove Park Baring Hall Hotel pub reopens after community saves it from demolition

Theresa Matzat and Tom Mitchell at the bar.

Some of the Baring Hall Hotel campaigners at the pub's opening night

First published in News
Last updated
News Shopper: Photograph of the Author by , deputy news editor

A GROVE Park pub saved from demolition and described as the area's "beating heart" has been packing in the punters after finally reopening.

Back in 2011, the Baring Hall Hotel was due to be turned into flats and shops, prompting an outcry from locals, councillors, the Royal Institute of British Architects, Ancient Monuments Society and even TV star Stephen Fry.

A local listing for the 132-year-old Baring Road building was granted by Mayor of Lewisham Sir Steve Bullock and now the boozer has thrown open its doors again thanks to pub company Antic - responsible for turning around a number of problem venues in the borough.

New manager Theresa Matzat said: "The area has been crying out for a pub and we are hoping to open the kitchen as soon as possible to apart from giving people a place to drink and be merry but also offer good seasonal food.

"It is a brilliant building and the fact that it is right opposite Grove Park station makes it a perfect location."

News Shopper: Some of the Baring Hall Hotel campaigners at the pub's opening night

Built in 1882, the former hotel is the last remaining part of the Grove Park estate and is named after the Earl of Northbrook, Lord Baring, who helped develop it.

John King from the Grove Park Community Group which, along with the Lewisham Local History Society, helped run the campaign to save it, said: "This will be the beginning of a turnaround we hope."

He said: "We're very pleased that it's finally happened and we take our hats off to Antic."

Ward councillor Cllr Suzannah Clarke helped organise a 300-signature petition to keep the pub,

Cllr Clarke said: "It's absolutely fantastic. The fact that we've got lights in there, when you come to the traffic lights, instead of it being a ghost town, suddenly there's a beating heart in the middle of Grove Park.

"Local people are very proud that they saved it."

The councillor said she hoped the venue would become a community hub and would remain family friendly in an area where regeneration is slowly taking place.

It is currently open from 4pm each day, with a new kitchen and earlier opening hours set to follow later this month.

Comments (9)

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9:24pm Thu 2 Jan 14

Marty1979 says...

Let's hope the 300 people that signed the petition actually use it
Let's hope the 300 people that signed the petition actually use it Marty1979
  • Score: 12

6:42am Fri 3 Jan 14

molsey says...

Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.
Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself. molsey
  • Score: 3

7:05am Fri 3 Jan 14

sarfflondonbird says...

molsey wrote:
Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.
Isn't that closed down to?
[quote][p][bold]molsey[/bold] wrote: Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.[/p][/quote]Isn't that closed down to? sarfflondonbird
  • Score: 2

7:30am Fri 3 Jan 14

sarfflondonbird says...

Well done to the people of Grove Park for managing to keep some of its heritage and pub. We have lost too many good pubs because of irresponsible people running them and allowing filthy drug dealing to take place in the south east london area (and beyond) and through cheap booze sold in supermarkets.
Now,will people of Catford do the same to save the pub by the train station on catford bridge from becoming a block of flats also? Whilst unfortunately having to drive through that bleak area over Xmas, I noticed that once lovely old pub has also been boarded up and to think how long that has been standing, it seems a shame to lose it! It seems that from lewisham hospital one pub after another has been closed and demolished because of being taken over by drug dealers working the area and turning them from once decent meeting places to ghetto type slums. Eradicate the scum druggies for good, then we may save some of our old pub heritage, what's actually left of them.
Well done to the people of Grove Park for managing to keep some of its heritage and pub. We have lost too many good pubs because of irresponsible people running them and allowing filthy drug dealing to take place in the south east london area (and beyond) and through cheap booze sold in supermarkets. Now,will people of Catford do the same to save the pub by the train station on catford bridge from becoming a block of flats also? Whilst unfortunately having to drive through that bleak area over Xmas, I noticed that once lovely old pub has also been boarded up and to think how long that has been standing, it seems a shame to lose it! It seems that from lewisham hospital one pub after another has been closed and demolished because of being taken over by drug dealers working the area and turning them from once decent meeting places to ghetto type slums. Eradicate the scum druggies for good, then we may save some of our old pub heritage, what's actually left of them. sarfflondonbird
  • Score: 14

12:07pm Fri 3 Jan 14

molsey says...

sarfflondonbird wrote:
molsey wrote:
Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.
Isn't that closed down to?
It had its licence suspended for 6 months around March so it should be open again by now. But I haven't driven past for some time so I don't know.
[quote][p][bold]sarfflondonbird[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]molsey[/bold] wrote: Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.[/p][/quote]Isn't that closed down to?[/p][/quote]It had its licence suspended for 6 months around March so it should be open again by now. But I haven't driven past for some time so I don't know. molsey
  • Score: 1

1:52pm Fri 3 Jan 14

sarfflondonbird says...

molsey wrote:
sarfflondonbird wrote:
molsey wrote:
Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.
Isn't that closed down to?
It had its licence suspended for 6 months around March so it should be open again by now. But I haven't driven past for some time so I don't know.
okey dokes. Lets hope someone decent gets to run it properly this time.
[quote][p][bold]molsey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]sarfflondonbird[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]molsey[/bold] wrote: Now the Downham Tavern can have the gangsters all to itself.[/p][/quote]Isn't that closed down to?[/p][/quote]It had its licence suspended for 6 months around March so it should be open again by now. But I haven't driven past for some time so I don't know.[/p][/quote]okey dokes. Lets hope someone decent gets to run it properly this time. sarfflondonbird
  • Score: 3

4:27pm Fri 3 Jan 14

johnnyadams says...

Re: ... Built in 1882, the former hotel is the last remaining part of the Grove Park estate and is named after the Earl of Northbrook, Lord Baring, who helped develop it.
There is and was no such person as Lord Baring. It is Lord Northbrook from the Baring banking family.
Re: ... Built in 1882, the former hotel is the last remaining part of the Grove Park estate and is named after the Earl of Northbrook, Lord Baring, who helped develop it. There is and was no such person as Lord Baring. It is Lord Northbrook from the Baring banking family. johnnyadams
  • Score: 5

2:35pm Mon 6 Jan 14

kentlad says...

Dont worry i'll give it three months and it will be closed again!
Dont worry i'll give it three months and it will be closed again! kentlad
  • Score: -1

5:25pm Mon 6 Jan 14

Biffo. says...

kentlad wrote:
Dont worry i'll give it three months and it will be closed again!
With luck it will be. I see flats on the horizon in a premo location for commuters.
[quote][p][bold]kentlad[/bold] wrote: Dont worry i'll give it three months and it will be closed again![/p][/quote]With luck it will be. I see flats on the horizon in a premo location for commuters. Biffo.
  • Score: -4

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