A NEW pub is set to open on the site of a former award-winning eatery.

The Oyster and Otter on Livesey Branch Road, Feniscowles, will reopen as The Foundry Tap and Kitchen.

The building has been boarded up ever since it closed in June 2020 when its operator went into administration but construction is set to start on Monday with a view to opening next month.

Bosses signed terms for The Foundry in summer 2021 but delayed the £300,000 refurbishment plan due to the pandemic.

It is being run by a small independent operator with four venues on their books ­— The Plough Inn at Galgate, The Horns Inn at Churchtown, Garstang, The Cock and Bottle at Tarleton and The Hunters at Walton Park, Preston.


DELIGHTS: The Foundry Tap and Kitchen posted a photograph of food

DELIGHTS: The Foundry Tap and Kitchen posted a photograph of food


Paul Bloomer, who is behind the scheme, said: "Pubs are our thing, it's our DNA, it's what we do and love.

"We first visited the site of the then Oyster and Otter a few years back.

"We loved the venue as a whole. With its low ceilings, big frontal windows, a decent sized carpark plus the added bonus of roadside appeal. It ticked a lot of the boxes that we look for in a venue.

"It was then over the next two or three visits that we took more of an interest in the surrounding areas and this is where the heat was turned up.

"We were blown away by what a lovely area this pub is situated in plus the rapid expansion of both domestic housing and commercial properties within the neighbouring areas made this even more attractive."

Mr Bloomer added their vision and number one priority is having a local pub in the area 'supported by locals'.

He said: "We have done our market research within the area and shall be very respectful to our line of sight. We do however have a firm backbone and business model that we feel not just the immediate area will benefit from but also attract those from further afield."

Oyster and Otter was the first pub opened by the Seafood Pub Company, the dining-led pub group run by Joycelyn Neve and chef Antony Shirley, in 2011.

The Seafood Pub Company went into administration in June 2020 and a deal was later struck with Oakman to buy six of their pubs, but this did not include the Oyster and Otter.


CLOSED: The Oyster and Otter in Pleasington

CLOSED: The Oyster and Otter in Pleasington


The Foundry Tap and Kitchen is looking to recruit new members of staff to join the team.

Cllr Phil Riley, Blackburn with Darwen's regeneration boss, said: "This news sounds good for the town.

"The Oyster and Otter was popular with local residents so we are pleased that a restaurant is going to re-open there at the same time we are introducing a new planning development in the vicinity of the establishment.

"The Oyster and Otter was one of the more popular restaurants so it is good coming out of the pandemic that we are getting commercial investment and people looking to breathe new life into sites."

Cllr Derek Hardman, the current mayor of Blackburn with Darwen who represents the Livesey with Pleasington ward, said: "If you left the site empty any longer it will deteriorate.

"I am delighted that someone is wanting to invest in it and opening it up again.

"We had no problems with the Oyster and Otter there. It was very popular bringing people from outside the area and a lot of locals used it."

Cllr David Russell, who also represent the area, said: "I'm pleased the premises are re-opening and I hope the new business will be a positive addition to the area and is a thriving success."

Stephen Hughes, of Blackburn and Darwen Pubs Past and Present Facebook group said: "It is excellent to hear about the building re-opening as a pub and restaurant as it has been closed for 18 months.

"It could have been knocked down for houses but to hear about it being turned into a venue is great."