City’s oldest pub to return after its longest ever closure

Leeds’ oldest pub, Whitelock’s, is poised to make a welcome return on Monday 17 May in line with the easing of Government restrictions.

The watering hole, which has recently undergone an extensive refurbishment of its outdoor beer garden will kick things off by celebrating the cream of Yorkshire’s independent drink scene, showcasing local heroes from around the region from breweries to gin distilleries, and coffee roasters to cider makers.

Owner Ed Mason said: “We have been closed since October, and this is the first time in the pub’s 300-years that we’ve been shut for so long.

“It’s been a tough few months for everyone, and we thought what better way to re-open than with a celebration of all that is great about the region’s independent drinks businesses.

“Whitelock’s has always thrived serving the workers and shoppers in the heart of Leeds city centre, and we are delighted to be able to safely welcome people back as the city comes out of lockdown.”

The pub will team up with its adjoining sister bar, The Turk’s Head. The week-long showcase event will run until Sunday 23 May.

It will feature a wide range of guest beers from independent Leeds breweries including Northern Monk, Kirkstall Brewery and Anthology, and from further afield in Yorkshire including Zapato, Roosters and Abbeydale.

Two of the region’s biggest gin distillers will be on hand with an array of summer cocktails. Whittaker’s will be bringing along some of its gins, fresh from its copper stills in Nidderdale. These will include the fruity Rampant Raspberry and the citrusy Summer Solstice.

Artisan distillers Sloemotion will bring its distinctive brand of gin and sloe gin to the table, with its range of tempting flavours, including Blackberry and Apple. And there will be an exceptional collection of reds and whites from York’s brilliant Field & Fawcett wine merchants.

Coffee & tea connoisseurs are welcome to drop in for some choice bean selections from Maude Coffee Roasters, and South Yorkshire’s Bird House loose tea from Sheffield. There will also be Whisky from Filey Bay.

The menu will feature the Whitelock’s range of Yorkshire pub classics sourced from local suppliers at Kirkgate Market with firm favourites including both fish & chips and a vegan version using Banana Blossom and nori.