Black Country man to open second pub

It started as a chat between friends over a pint about the decline of pubs and what could be done to entice drinkers back.

Black Country man to open second pub

And after hitting on a formula they thought would work, they decided to put their theory to the test and launch their own pub chain.

Following the successful launch of the company's first pub, in Brierley Hill, in December work has now started on the second - only a day after a lease on the building was signed.

The former Essentials store, in Cradley Heath High Street, is being converted into the pub, which is expected to open in around six weeks time.

Steve Letherbarrow, company director, and Natasha Aston, landlady of The Blackcountryman in Brierley Hill, who at 20 is the second youngest licensee in the country

Steve Letherbarrow, one of the men behind Blackcountryman Ltd, said the aim was to open 10 new pubs in the area within the next two years.

All of them will be called the Blackcountryman and follow the ideas set down during that first conversation.

Mr Letherbarrow, 67, of Brierley Hill, said: "The formula we decided was that the pubs should be warm, pleasant and serve the right beer at the right price.

"My friend is a silent partner in the business and wants to remain in the background.

The interior of what will be the second pub in the chain

"It really did all stem from that one conversation and at the moment it is going very well."

Drinkers can buy real ales brewed in the area, including Enville Ale, Pardoes and Holdens, for £2.50. Ciders and lagers are also available but at a higher cost.

The company's first pub was opened at the former Laurel, in Stourbridge Road, Brierley Hill, which opened on December 1.

Mr Letherbarrow, who has previously run a transport firm and fish and chip shops, said the Cradley Heath pub would be the first they had created from scratch.

The project is expected to cost around £100,000.

"We had planned to open a pub in Cradley Heath first but the opportunity came up in Brierley Hill and we decided to take it," he said.

"That has gone very well and we are now continuing with this new project.

"The lease was signed on Monday and work has already started.

"At the moment we are expected everything to be ready in around six weeks. It is a very exciting project."

Mr Letherbarrow said the first pub had created around seven jobs.

"Although we are focusing on the Cradley Heath pub at the moment we are looking at where the next pub should be opened," he said.

"There are a few option being considered at the moment but we are not rushing into anything.

"A lot of things have to be considered such as whether it is the right place to launch a pub and if there is a demand for it in a particular area.

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News