Portsmouth pub Druid's Arms gets opening date as The Stag management team take over Buckland venue

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A popular pub which shut following the sad death of a beloved landlady is set to reopen, and the new management team has announced when customers will be welcomed back.

The Druid's Arms at 13 Binsteed Road, Buckland was run by beloved landlady, Sue Castellano, who dedicated 30 years of her life to serving the community. Sue sadly died last year at the age of 66 after falling ill with cancer and customers came together to buy a memorial bench. The pub continued to operate with Sue's partner managing the public house on his own - but he decided to 'move on' and the venue was closed in March.

The operators of The Stag will take over the shut Druid's Arms.The operators of The Stag will take over the shut Druid's Arms.
The operators of The Stag will take over the shut Druid's Arms. | Google

Now, the venue is set to be relaunched by a publican family which has been in the industry for 200 years and currently runs The Stag at 183 New Road, Fratton.

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Karen Andrews who has been running The Stag for 15 years and will operate the two pubs with her daughter Lucy White said she is “excited” to bring the community hub back into use. The pub will open its door with a ‘soft launch” on Saturday, May 18, with an opening celebration event on the horizon - with details to follow.

Speaking to The News, Karen Andrews said: “At the end of the day, you want to do everything you can to keep a local community pub going.

“I was born and bred in a pub. I was actually born in the Lord Chichester, which is literally around the corner from me, in 1968 and my parents took the Shearer Arms over in 1969 until 2003. With a pub, you’ve got to live it. You can’t just go into it thinking it’s going to earn you a living, you have got to live with the ups and downs and understand that some days are going to be better than others. But, every day is a good day because you’ve got something to get up and strive for.”

Former landlady Sue Castellano was commemorated at The Druid’s Arms last summer with members of the local community - as well as Lord Mayor councillor Tom Coles - coming together to remember her community service. She is remembered for her “tireless” work organising local community events as well as her dedication to the pub.

For more information about The Druid’s Arms, click here.

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