This is why a Sunderland pub has been painted bright red as it reopens as Flanagan's Irish bar

Drinkers are invited to paint the town red at a pub which is leading by example.

Wednesday, 28th August 2019, 5:09 pm

Newly-opened Flanagan's, in Holmeside, Sunderland, has painted its exterior red as homage to famous Dublin hostelry Temple Bar.

Irish pubs in general are known for their bright exteriors and Jeremy Elder who co-owns the bar with Ryan Temple, 27, says the pub it will bring something "a bit unique" to the city.

Mr Elder, 50, said: "The reaction so far has been positive. We are trying to give Sunderland a feel of Dublin and emulate the Temple Bar pub.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The new red painted Flanagan's in Holmeside, Sunderland city centre, with co-owner Jeremy Elder.

"You can see it from miles away and it is a way of inviting people in to enjoy a real Irish pub, with Irish food, drink and music. People know if you go to an Irish bar that you are going to have a good time with friendly people even if you might not be able to remember it.

"So we are hoping as many people as possible are going to come along and help us paint the town red."

Flanagan's promises free live music down stairs every Friday and Saturday night and kicked off with a huge launch party.

Star including Nineties chart topper Sonia, former N-Trance member Kelly Llorenna and X Factor Irish singer Mary Byrne performed on opening night.

Dublin's famous Temple Bar pub.

Mr Elder, who is also owner of Leaf Bark and Berries coffee shop, in Seaham, said: "People couldn't believe it when they saw Sonia. She was fabulous."

House and techno DJs will also appear upstairs until around 3am at The Pogues Lounge - named in honour of the Eighties band.

Mr Elder, who is from Seaham, said Pogues lead singer Shane MacGowan was also due to visit Flanagan's to officially open the lounge but was unwell.

He said: "Unfortunately he was not able to make it as he was not too well at the time. But he has sent us a signed message wishing us good luck which was good of him."

Flanagan's co-owner Jeremy Elder with the signed message from The Pogues' Shane MacGowan in the lounge named after the Irish band.

Flanagan's, which was formerly The Beehive, has created 23 full and part-time jobs with Mr Elder saying the transformation has cost a "significant investment".

Among the Irish touches are beers, whiskies, papers and Irish sport on big screens.

The new red painted Flanagan's in Holmeside, Sunderland.