Row over historic pub name change

TWO Bromsgrove historians are unhappy that a well-known town centre pub has reached the end of the line.

But the owners of the former `Shoulder of Mutton' which reopens soon as `The Wishing Well' says the change of name represents a new start.

Dr Alan Richards described the demise of the `Shoulder of Mutton' as a sad day for the town.

"A little bit of Bromsgrove has been lost. There has been a `Shoulder of Mutton' on the site for 500 years," he said.

Author Robin Shaw who lives in Kidderminster Road and is a member of the Housman Society committee also laments the change of name.

"Edward. the poet A.E. Houseman's father who used to live at Perry Hall and was fond of a drink used to hurl a stone that landed on the pub roof and was a signal for the landlord to fetch him a jug of ale.

"We regret the name change because it is the loss of a part of Bromsgrove's history."

But joint licensee Jeff Kay was unrepentant and looks forward to the pub in St John's Street reopening on Saturday as `The Wishing Well.'

"Latterly `The Shoulder of Mutton' had a somewhat dubious reputation and this represents a new beginning," he said.

"The pub has undergone a major refurbishment and extension including the creation of a larger bar, new kitchen and garden area."

It will offer real ale and live music. Punch Taverns have undertaken the renovation as a joint venture with Hop Pole Inn Limited.