Peterborough is to get a fish and chip restaurant this summer - along with a “proper” city centre pub and a chippy - all under one roof.
If everything goes to plan, the new look Beehive pub, with new TV screens, a pool table and music, will open at the end of July and also be home to the Posh Fish and Chips restaurant and a takeaway.
Work is already underway, and passersby will soon see the blue building be painted a cool stoney grey colour with new signs for the pub and restaurant businesses.
Inside the majority of the work involves subdividing the ground floor to create distinct pub and restaurant areas,
The kitchen will be overhauled, not least to allow the installation of a state-of-the-art frying range and create a counter to serve customers using the takeaway chip shop, accessed from what is currently the gated yard.
Lauren Trevor, who manages The Beehive - opened by parents Jim and Sharon in 2010 - says the changes have come about to make the business more accessible and give Peterborough something new and fresh.
Despite its “more than a pub, not just a restaurant” billing, she feels drinkers have become intimidated by diners, particularly on busy evenings when diners completely take over.
“We want to be more accessible, more inclusive; we don’t want customers who just want to come in for a drink feel they can’t, not least because there is nowhere to sit. So The Beehive will be a ‘proper’ pub.
“Three 55-inch televisions will be mounted on the walls, but not just for sport. I don’t want people to get the idea we are opening a sports bar.
“The tall tables will go and be replaced by more comfortable, lounge-style furniture and the existing booth seating will be themed.
“We also have a pool table on order to complete the pub feel.”
As for the restaurant - “Posh Fish and Chips at The Beehive” - it will get new table tops and a new look, and remain table service of course, but as the name suggests the menu will centre around seafood.
Head chef Martin Cox, who will continue to control the kitchen, is still finalising the menu but apart from the obvious haddock or cod loin and chips there will be the likes of lobster goujons, scallops and skatewings.
“While we will be simplifying the offering, we will be keeping the quality customers have become accustomed to,” added Lauren.
“We have a reputation for food but for all the gastronomic delights that we have been able to offer, our fish and chips with home-made mushy peas, has always been a top seller.
“We will be keeping our best selling starter - crispy king prawns - and soft shell crab burgers, which we have trialled on the menu recently, and have gone down very well, are also likely to feature.
“The menu will be finalised soon but we will have lots of daily specials every day depending on what is available,” she added.