Popular pub reopens after shock closure

Johnny Vegas enjoys a pint in a local pub.
Johnny Vegas enjoys a pint in a local pub.

ONE of St Helens’ best known pubs was due to re-open its door last night.

The Bird I’th Hand, a regular meeting point for Saints fans down the years, shut unexpectedly on Friday.

The Bird I'th Hand pub in Prescot Road, St Helens

The Bird I'th Hand pub in Prescot Road, St Helens

Punters were given no explanation for the sudden closure.

Brewery bosses blamed the closure “unforeseen circumstances” but said temporary managers would now be running the pub.

A spokeswoman from Punch Taverns, which owns the Bird I’Th Hand, said: “We are pleased to confirm that the Bird I’th Hand will trade as normal from Tuesday, March 8, after its short term closure due to unforeseen circumstances.

“Our temporary operators, Les and Paul look forward to welcoming customers, old and new, back to the venue, whilst we continue to look for a permanent licensee.”

Located within walking distance of Knowsley Road, the Bird I’th Hand is among those likely to be hit financially by Saints relocation.

St Helens comedian Johnny Vegas was a regular at the boozer and continued to frequent the Prescot Road watering hole on his returns to St Helens from his London base, name-checking the pub on his riotous 18 Stone of Idiot TV show.

A pub regular, who did not want to be named, said the pub had suffered a drastic drip in trade over recent months.

“It’s a real shame because it is one of the best know pubs in St Helens,” said the 72-year-old, who lives in Eccleston and has been a regular at the pub for more than 40 years..

“They’ve been expecting a hit from Saints moving but that hasn’t really kicked in yet but the smoking ban has had an affect, too. At one time it was very popular with Pilkington staff.”