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Popular border pub Smugglers' Inn on market

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The Smugglers’ Inn at Clady is a busy country pub on the Co Tyrone and Co Donegal border

The Smugglers’ Inn at Clady is a busy country pub on the Co Tyrone and Co Donegal border

The Smugglers’ Inn at Clady is a busy country pub on the Co Tyrone and Co Donegal border

A pub and restaurant in Co Tyrone close to the border with the Republic has gone on the market for just under £300,000.

And despite challenges facing the pub industry, Hospitality Ulster chief executive Colin Neill said he was confident that there is plenty of potential for a sale of the business.

Smugglers' Inn in Clady features a 40-seater bar, 80-seater restaurant, open fire, 50-seater lounge and comes with a full drinks and entertainment licence.

The busy country pub on the Co Tyrone and Co Donegal border is popular with residents on both sides of the border and has hosted country musicians such as Ritchie Remo.

The business is run by the Elliott family from Clady and has an asking price of £295,000.

The restaurant serves food prepared by chef Anthony Arnold and is popular with locals and regulars from Donegal.

Publican Fiona Elliott's mother and father Noleen and Francis took over the pub 16 years ago but today she runs the pub alongside her husband Colin and the family recently refurbished the pub.

Fiona said: "We're a family-run pub in a very supportive community. We host everything from weddings and confirmations to birthdays. In the past we have won Hospitality Ulster's family pub of the year.

"The decision to sell is mainly down to the fact that two of the partners want to retire."

The pub is a popular stop-off for those crossing the border.

Mrs Elliott added: "We always offer big discounts and try to support the community.

I think the pub would suit someone with a grown-up family who can help them out with the running of it. The community would really like someone friendly and welcoming to take it over."

The sale also includes a car park, smoking area and games room.

Colin Neill said: "Things are still challenging in hospitality, while some are seeing a boost in trade in Belfast, it doesn't necessarily carry through the province.

"But even at that are always opportunities for a bar - pubs are now much more than just somewhere to get a drink, people nearly always go to the pub for another reason.

"Drinking alcohol has become a secondary event and pubs have to become this third place - these days people go to the pub to eat, to socialise, to relax, to watch sports - all kinds of things.

"Nowadays, the only constant thing in the industry is change.

"A lot of pubs are deciding to sell more craft beers and ciders and speciality spirits, they're the equivalent of the big expensive watch - a lifestyle."

Belfast Telegraph