PUB PLANS: Mike and Tracey Pearson are looking forward to reopening
PUB PLANS: Mike and Tracey Pearson are looking forward to reopening

A VILLAGE pub is to reopen after being shut for two years and has reverted to its original name.
The Bridge Inn, at Whorlton, closed in September 2019 when former landlord Thomas Magnay – who renamed the pub the Fernaville’s Rest – called time.
The decision was made after the closure of Whorlton Bridge led to a massive downturn in trade.
The hostelry is to reopen this month following an extensive interior makeover by husband-and-wife team Mike and Tracey Pearson.
The couple, from Ingleby Barwick, had been searching for a pub they could run together as their first joint venture. They “fell in love” with the village and the premises after viewing it in the summer.
Mrs Pearson, who has worked in the hospitality industry most of her life, said: “This was the first pub we viewed in person and we couldn’t help falling in love with the place.
“I’ve been in the industry for a long while and Mike has always wanted to be in it, so we thought, ‘why not give it a go?”
Since moving to Whorlton in September, Mr Pearson, a gas engineer who runs his own maintenance company, has been refitting and decorating the interior.
He said: “It’s been a lot of hard work getting things just how we want things – cosy and welcoming.”
The couple had planned to reopen just before Christmas, but after hearing about the village’s Christmas tree switch on, planned for Sunday, December 12, at 6pm, they have brought the date forward to coincide with the event.
The couple have also commissioned their own pale ale – The Bridge – from local brewer Mithril Ales. It will be on tap along with Landlord beer.
Mr Pearson added: “We will be reintroducing food in the new year once we’ve got ourselves settled in.”