Remember when Sunderland's Grindon Mill pub got a new look and menu?

Here's a tasty reminder of times gone by. Who remembers the Grindon Mill and the era when it had a brand new look?

Thursday, 28th June 2018, 1:28 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th July 2018, 5:24 pm
The Grindon Mill pictured in June 1994.
The Grindon Mill pictured in June 1994.

It happened in 1994 when Frank and Doreen Black, who had been the pub’s managers for more than three years, took over its ownership.

They brought in a new look which included a full revamp and another tasty twist.

Owners Frank and Doreen Black behind the bar of the Grindon Mill in 1994.

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Doreen said at the time: “We stand by old-fashioned, traditional home cooking.”

Tempting dishes on the 1994 menu included old English steak and kidney pie cooked in ale, and the Grindon Mill Dip.

Full Sunday roasts and a great range of vegetarian dishes added to the appeal.

And you couldn’t ask for a better team in charge, as the Blacks had more than 35 years of experience between them.

The restaurant area at the Grindon Mill pictured in June 1994.

There were lots of new events to enjoy at the pub as well. Bands such as Sunset Trio gave live performances, and who remembers the Pernod night, or the Father’s Day event where free Irish coffees were on offer for the dads?

It all got off to a great start for the new owners with a reported 25% increase in trade in the first few months, and with lots of old regulars making a welcome return.

The pub had its own birthday club, and discount cards for people who were regular diners to get a 10% discount.

It was all boding well for a bright future and we would love to hear from people who loved to pay a visit to the pub.

The interior of the Grindon Mill after its 1994 revamp.

Back in 2014, the Echo reported that the Grindon Mill was to reopen as a round-the-clock fitness centre and dance studio, after councillors rubber-stamped a planning application.

But we’re hoping to get your memories of the building in its pub days.

And here’s a reminder of some of the other news which was making the 1994 headlines.

It was the year when television cook Rustie Lee came to The Bridges and shared her culinary tips from a mobile kitchen.

It was the year when Neighbours, Wipeout with Paul Daniels, and Byker Grove were pulling in the television punters on BBC1.

You could watch Star Trek: The Next Generation or Open University on BBC2, or This Is Your Life, Sharpe and Crosswits on Tyne Tees.

Or what about Brookside, Mork and Mindy, and Frasier on Channel 4?

Perhaps a night out was more your style? If so, the choice was huge in 1990s Sunderland. Brutus Gold was the DJ at Annabels, where admission was £1 and Wednesday night was ‘70s night. – with period attire optional!

Over at Finos, a karaoke party was on the timetable, and there was another pub making the news.

The Jolly Potter was refurbished and re-opening with its own new look, complete with chandeliers and old prints of South Hylton.

And the Tunstall Lodge Hotel, off Burdon Lane, was going well after doubling the size of its restaurant.

How about a trip to the pictures? Cannon was showing Intersection with Richard Gere and Sharon Stone, while Shadowlands was on at the Sunderland Empire Studio, and Schindler’s List was at the Washington Fairworld Film Centre.

If you were a fan of club life, Wednesdays were ‘60s and ‘70s night at the Eastender, with a free 25-pint draw.

Or over at the Humbledon and Plains Farm Social Club, Wednesdays were devoted to 50-50 dancing to the sounds of Kevin Hartley.

A day later, you could take in bingo and a live act at the Lakeside Sports and Social Club, while Friday night was club night at Steels Social Club.

And if you wanted to try out your talents on the green baize, you could have a go at Pot The Lot at the Thorney Close Variety Club every Thursday.

Maybe a bit of retail therapy was more your style. There were sales on at Kings Jewellers at The Galleries in Washington, Little Miss Muffets children’s clothing shop in Hylton Road, and Tucci Menswear in Crowtree Road, both Sunderland.

What are your memories of Sunderland in 1994? Was there a favourite shop, restaurant or pub from the era you would love to highlight? Email [email protected]