13 October 2008

Regina est Mortuus

There can be few things sadder than watching the steady decline and ultimate passing of a real ale pub, but alas I must now report the closure of the Queen Victoria in Leicester.

What started out as a highly promising new venture began to disintegrate into a shambles, with beer range and quality deteriorating rapidly, increasingly unsavoury clientele beginning to frequent the place and general maintenance going to pot.

It seems that within a couple of days of their last Bogtrotter beer festival (3rd – 5th October) the bailiffs had been in and the place is now boarded up.

The jungle drums here in Leicester indicate that the closure was due to unpaid debts; certainly we here at Ale Affinity have received enquiries from persons within the brewing industry wishing to contact the proprietor.

The Queen Vic had the potential to be a true gem of a pub; the proximity to the train station and the soon to open Curve theatre made it an ideal location, and the intention of delivering quality micro brewed ales should have made it a real winner.

Sadly however something went badly awry, and over a period of perhaps three months a multitude of issues began to rear their ugly heads.

The result was never really in doubt once the rot set in, but somehow I kept holding out hopes of a turn for the better.

Now it only remains to be seen whether anyone will take on the pub and commit to the expenditure required to make it truly viable – a complete cellar overhaul, full renovation of the living quarters upstairs and significant structural work throughout the building.

For now at least, it seems the Queen is dead.



  1. I was in there on Tuesday 7th. My first visit and it now appears my last! There were just the two ales on but about 10 barrels of cider on the bar presumably left over from the festival. Surprised I've not read about its closure on Scoopgen as it was very popular with a lot of guys on that site. Ah well.

  2. Was it a pub leased from one of the PubCo's? Was the landlord up to it? Did it trade well other than when beer festivals were on? I could go on. An all too familiar story I fear.

  3. I know the Scoopgen crew were quite partial to it - for a while it looked like being a scoopers paradise, but it didn't last.

    The festivals were certainly fairly successful, and outside of those the business was fairly steady. The lease was free of tie and I understand it was a peppercorn rent.

    I can't really go in to the details of what went wrong here, but suffice to say things fell apart in a big way.

    Mercifully the Vaults are doing sterling work, the Swan & Rushes continue to serve exceptionally well conditioned beer and the Criterion seems to be coming back to form after a worrying period.

  4. I expect it was cheap supermarket beer that really caused it's downfall!


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