Fuller’s pubs in Chiswick still open but half empty

How are Chiswick’s pubs faring after PM’s “avoid pubs” comment on Monday? Chief Executive of Fuller, Smith & Turner, Simon Emeny, issued an angry statement on Tuesday, describing Boris’ comment as “reckless”. So how are Fuller’s pubs faring? Fullers has six pubs in Chiswick, since the Griffin brewery is here. At the moment they are all still open, but the brewery shop is closed and tours of the brewery (now owned by Asahi) are temporarily suspended. When I rang round and spoke to staff at the Fuller’s pubs, they were clearly nervous about their future.

One long standing member of the bar staff at a Fuller’s pub in Chiswick told me the company has had to close a number of its pubs in the City but they’re kept their Chiswick pubs open. “We’re waiting to see if we will be made redundant. If the Government decides to shut the pubs we will probably lose our jobs”.

George IV
185 Chiswick High Rd, Chiswick, W4 2DR

George IV has seen fewer customers this week but is still open and intends to stay open until they are forced to close. George IV offers 20% off food and drink to Chiswick Calendar Club Card members.

The Pilot
56 Wellesley Rd, Chiswick, London W4 4BZ

The Pilot has seen its trade decimated this week. It relies on custom from Chiswick Business Park and many of the staff of the 50 or so companies based there are now working from home. “Our trade is down to less than a quarter of what it was” their Events manager told me. When I spoke to her there were just four customers in the pub. They were expecting to be packed out for Mother’s Day this Sunday (22 March) but they now only have a handful of bookings, even though they are offering a free gin and tonic gift bag to mothers and a voucher to return for a free main meal on another night. The Pilot is also a Club Card member. With the exception of Mother’s Day, it usually offers Club Card holders 15% off food and drink.

Old Packhorse
434 Chiswick High Rd, Chiswick, W4 5TF

The Old Packhorse has cancelled all its entertainment. It usually has a late night DJ till 2.00am on Friday and Saturday and is open till 1.00am on Thursday. This week they’re working reduced hours – closing at midnight on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. They’re still serving Thai food, but the number of customers has been way down throughout the week.

Images above: One Over the Ait

One Over the Ait
8 Kew Bridge Rd, Brentford TW8 0FJ

One Over the Ait (technically in Brentford, but right by Kew Bridge!), also  Club Card member, found that trade was right down in the middle of the week, but picked up on Thursday, though not to usual levels. One of the staff there told me “people already seem to need to get out of the house”.

Bell & Crown
11-13 Thames Rd, Strand-on-the-Green, W4 3PL

The Bell & Crown is usually busy, with its riverside setting the perfect place to watch the sun go down. It is staying open until told otherwise, but head office has told them not to accept bookings beyond the weekend. Food bookings have dropped off dramatically, but curiously there were more people in the pub just drinking on Thursday (19 March) than usual. The Bell & Crown also offers a Club Card discount.

Mawson’s Arms
Mawson Ln, Chiswick, London W4 2QA

The Mawson’s Arms, by Hogarth roundabout, is the main watering hole for staff at the Griffin brewery and visitors on a tour of the brewery. It opens at 8.00am and closes at 8.00pm. Both the shop and the brewery tours are temporarily suspended.

‘Any brewery tours will be rearranged or we’ll provide a voucher. If you have a tour booked with us we will be contacting you soon with further details. We look forward to welcoming you back soon’.

Griffin Brewery – also a member of the Club Card scheme, offering a 10% discount in the shop – would like to point out that customers can still buy beer online and they will deliver it to your home.

shop.fullersbrewery.co.uk

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See also: Boris’ advice to avoid pubs “reckless” says Fuller’s boss

See also: Budget changes will help some traders but not others on Chiswick High Rd