An historic pub which has witnessed the changing face of Sunderland’s industrial history is under new management.
Once a popular haunt with shipyard workers, The Saltgrass has retained its traditional open fire and decor.
New tenant Craig Davies says he feels passionate about honouring the Deptford pub’s roots, while also bringing new punters through the door.
“I used to be a regular here years ago and it’s always been a lovely old pub with great soul and atmosphere,” he said. “I took over the tenancy last Monday and it was closed for a week or so before that.
“Most of the work we’ve done is to clean it up and get it fully stocked.
“We haven’t changed the decor because people come here for the open fire and traditional feel, they like that it’s a pub they can treat like their living room.
“It’s such a famous pub. I don’t know anyone in Sunderland who hasn’t heard of The Saltgrass, and we wanted to get it back open as soon as possible for people.”
Craig wants to bring the emphasis back to live music with a buskers’ night on Wednesdays and live bands on Saturday nights and bank holiday weekends.
“We had the first of our buskers’ nights this week and it was popular, it’s always had that history of live music,” he said.
“We’re hoping to work with Sunderland College music students to give them a platform to perform too.”
Beer-wise, the pub will be serving craft ales with regular tipples such as Double Maxim and Swedish Blonde, brewed in Rainton Bridge, as well as guest ales.
Over the coming weeks, a new food menu will also be introduced.
Craig said: “We’ll be doing Sunday dinners in the next couple of weeks, as well as introducing a classic pub grub and light bites menu, with more of a range than there was before, as well as classic snacks like pickled mussels and eggs, which seem to be becoming popular again.”
The landlord said he hopes to see a resurgence in popularity of the Deptford drinking circuit.
“Hanover Place has opened in the old TJ Doyle’s and it has a different vibe to us,” he said.
“So people can come here for a more quiet pint before heading up to there or Dandy Longlegs. We want this to be a place where people can come to relax and feel at home.”
The next band booked is Rendezvous on Sunday, May 1.