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Great British Pub Awards

Pub Awards: Best Partnership finalist - The Urban Bar & Lounge, Doncaster

By MA , 29-Sep-2016

The Urban Bar
The Urban Bar

Five years ago, the Urban Bar & Lounge was a boarded-up pub in Doncaster’s town centre, previously known as the Great Northern and the Saracen’s Head.

Under lessee Paul Roidl, the all-wet business has grown to become one of Enterprise Inns’ top three sites in terms of turnover, and Heineken UK’s biggest delivery in South Yorkshire. It’s also played a major part in turning around the area’s rough reputation. 

On signing a Beacon agreement with Enterprise, the pubco refurbished the site as part of a deal that would enable Roidl to offer quality products to customers at low prices.

Building volume

Roidl’s task was then to build the volumes required to make money. He set about attracting younger people with music and entertainment, then began to build the daytime trade through racing and other sports, and live music events aimed at older people that pack out the pub on a Tuesday afternoon.

The Urban Bar developed links with local racecourses, providing a shuttle bus pick-up and drop-off point for Doncaster’s St Leger Week, and organising trips to Market Rasen for members of its racing club. It’s also a Doncaster Rovers FC Official Pub Partner, selling tickets for games.

Charity work under the Urban Community Fund reaches out to villages round-about, encouraging customers to travel into town to enjoy the venue’s entertainment.

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