The White Lion Heeley: One of Sheffield's oldest pubs 'set to reopen soon' after shock closure announcement

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The White Lion, on London Road, dates back to at least 1781 and is 'steeped in Sheffield history'

One of Sheffield's oldest pubs, famed for live music, is set to reopen soon, those in charge have said, following its shock closure.

The White Lion, on London Road, Heeley, which dates back to at least 1781, announced on its Facebook page yesterday, Tuesday, November 28, that it was shutting immediately, prompting great disappointment from customers.

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But a holding company looking after the pub, which had only reopened in June following a six-week makeover, has assured people it plans to reopen the historic venue 'as soon as possible'.

'We don't want Sheffield to lose one of its best music scene venues'

It said the pub had been forced to close following a burglary over the weekend, in which a number of window panes had been smashed.

Plans were already in place to find new managers to run the venue, who will start in a couple of weeks.

The pub holding company, which is looking after the business on behalf of the owner, Star Pubs & Bars, told The Star the White Lion would be open again in the next couple of weeks under new management.

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In a statement, the company added: "There's been some damage over the weekend, and there are eight panes of glass missing. We want to replace all that and get the pub open as soon as possible.

"We don't want Sheffield to lose one of its best music scene venues. We want to get the doors back open as soon as possible but we want to make sure the pub's right, safe and ready for trading again." A post on the pub's Facebook page by the outgoing managers Danielle Crutchley and Anthony Judge had stated on Tuesday: "It's with great sadness that unfortunately the White Lion pub will no longer be open.

Departing managers thank community for 'amazing' support

"I just want to thank you all for your amazing continued support. You have all been amazing and we appreciate it massively but this is out of our hands.

"We have met some amazing people during our time at the White Lion and we hope you all keep in touch."

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The White Lion has a reputation as one of Sheffield's best pubs for live music, and a number of acts which were booked to play there in the coming days have been forced to look for alternative venues.

The Grade II-listed building stands out with its pretty stained glass windows and glazed green brick facade, while inside are cosy snugs with fireplaces and at the back is a small beer garden.

The pub had been run for many years by Mandy Billings and Jon Terry, who left earlier this year. Daniel Price, who also runs the Crown Inn, just up the road, initially took over before being replaced by Danielle Crutchley and Anthony Judge.

Judging from the comments on the pub's Facebook page, many punters were impressed by the job the new duo had done before they announced their departure.

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One person wrote: "Really sorry to hear this news. The effort you've put in bringing back the live music has been appreciated by us all."

Another person commented: "Very sorry to hear that. Such a great pub."

And a third said: "Gutted for you, me, the musicians and regulars - this is such sad news."

Famous former landlords include Sheffield Wednesday legend

The pub is part of Heineken’s Star Pubs & Bars group.

Notable landlords from years gone by include Jonathan Woollen, a celebrated cricketer who ran the pub during the mid-19th century, and Sheffield Wednesday legend Billy Marsden, one of the most famous half-backs of his day, who was in charge during the 1930s.

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The White Lion is listed as being to let on the Star Pubs & Bars website, which describes it as a 'heritage pub steeped in Sheffield history'. The annual rent is given as £27,611, with the estimated annual turnover said to be £421,027.

The Star has contacted Star Pubs & Bars.

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