Monday, 16 May 2011


The future is looking bright for a picturesque but previously neglected historic Sawley inn, thanks to a major investment by a leading pub group. The Trent Lock, formerly The Trent Navigation, on Lock Lane opened its doors on Saturday 23rd April following its acquisition and refurbishment by Midlands-based restaurant and pub company, Mitchells & Butlers.

Up to 30 new jobs have been created at the new pub, which will operate as one of Mitchells & Butlers’ upmarket Vintage Inns’ pub restaurants. While its original features are carefully restored, the building will benefit from an extended state-of-the-art kitchen, new staff facilities and a modernised bar offering an extensive drinks selection.

Traditional interiors will be enhanced by contemporary touches, such as comfortable fitted seating, snug leather sofas and luxurious soft furnishings to offer a warm and welcoming environment.

Work is also being done to make the most of the pub’s idyllic waterside setting, where the River Trent and River Soar meet the start of the Erewash Canal. The garden will be landscaped, with new wicker furniture, herb gardens, improved lighting and an outdoor bottle bar being introduced to provide an appealing alfresco dining experience.

New landlord Alan Macfarlane explains: “At The Trent Lock we’ll be offering a premium eating-out experience in a traditional pub environment. Our aim is to be the perfect country pub, whether customers are popping in for a relaxing pint of real ale or enjoying a candlelit dinner at a beautifully laid table in our dining area. Full table service will be provided, and our private dining area will be ideal for special celebrations and business meetings. Our guests will also be able to take advantage of an online bookings facility for added convenience.”

Alan continues: “Thanks to its location, the pub has always enjoyed a bumper summer trade. But we’re onfident we can become an all-year-round favourite for both locals and those willing to travel for quality food and service in a picture postcard setting. My message to the good people of Sawley, Long Eaton, Breaston, Attenborough, Draycott and nearby is come and celebrate a fantastic new beginning with us.”
Nicola Yeomans, regional business manager for Vintage Inns, adds: “This is a serious commitment by Mitchells & Butlers, and our renovations and future plans will put The Trent Lock back on the East Midlands country dining map where it belongs. We’ll have a clean, contemporary look, but it will be a loving and tasteful restoration in keeping with the character and rustic appeal of the fine old building.
“The olde worlde charm will still prevail, but we’ll also provide the modern comforts and amenities that guests come to expect nowadays. It’s a best-of-both-worlds approach and we’re living proof that a well run pub collection with the right forward thinking offer can flourish even in tougher times.”                            
The Trent Lock is part of Vintage Inns, which is a unique collection of the UK’s best traditional (yet contemporary) dining pubs specialising in home cooked food, fine wines and cask-conditioned ales.

Although officially located in South Derbyshire, The Trent Lock also borders Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire. Other Vintage Inns in the vicinity include The Otter in Kegworth, The Springfield Inn in Lowdham, The Packe Arms in Hoton, The Quorndon Fox in Quorn, The Rose & Crown in Morley and The Hanging Gate near Belper.