Sad local news with the report that Bolton’s oldest pub, Ye Olde Man and Scythe, has closed unexpectedly. The current Grade 11 listed building dates back to 1636, but the first mention of a pub of that name goes all the way back to the reign of Henry 111 in 1251.
The pub traded as usual on Sunday, but staff arrived on Monday to find the doors locked. Pub owners Enterprise, in their usual sensitive manner, then texted staff to inform them that they were being made redundant. John Madden, who is the co-manager, said: "I’ve worked here for 13 years. We’re all shocked. The pub was open over the weekend including Sunday night and there was no sign of any closure."
Enterprise claim that the closure is only temporary but refuse to give precise details, citing “confidentiality”. I know the pub has struggled of late, particularly after the tragic death of larger-than-life landlord John Jewitt. However, it appears to be still trading well at weekends and I hope that Enterprise aren’t about to call time on this award-winning historic gem.