A popular Bury St Edmunds pub which was forced to close after a fire ripped through an adjoining building is set to re-open on Thursday.
The One Bull, on Angel Hill, was left badly damaged after a fire broke out in the Cycle King shop next door on Friday, September 29.
Around 60 firefighters tackled the blaze to stop it spreading to neighbouring buildings but the pub, along with the upstairs flat, where owner David Marjoram lived with his wife and two daughters, and the nearby Francela restaurant all suffered damage.
While the Francela restaurant re-opened in October and the family flat was repaired just in time for Christmas, the pub suffered severe damp and has remained closed for the past four months.
But Mr Marjoram said the finishing touches were being put in place and the pub would re-open to the public on February 1.
“There’s still plenty for us to do but we are on track at the moment and we’re aiming to get the majority of the work finished soon so we can start cleaning, training and re-stocking,” he said.
“We have been very busy and our first three weekends are really good for reservations, so it looks like everyone is being very supportive. The response has been very positive and we’re just really looking forward to getting on with it all.”
He said the support shown to them by the community of Bury St Edmunds had been pivotal in getting through the last few months.
“The support from people in Bury has been really great,” he said. “Not only immediately after the incident but on an ongoing basis.
“It’s lovely to hear that people have missed us and it really spurs us on.”
David also hopes that the re-opening will get the pub back on track for a successful 2018.
“It’s a tough time ahead for the industry as a whole but I hope if we can carry on delivering the high quality food and drink and entertainment then we are in for another very good year,” he said.
David and staff are also hosting a special dinner at the pub on Sunday, February 25, for the firefighters who dealt with the fire and stopped it spreading.
The Cycle King shop on Angel Hill remains closed but a temporary store in Chamberlayne Road was opened in October.
Two men in their twenties were arrested on suspicion of arson but were later released pending further investigation. Suffolk Police this week said investigations were ongoing.