A Dickens of a pub tempts landlady back to the trade
For some people, being a publican is in the blood. The new landlady of Arty P’s pub in Dorking was in the trade and left – but has been tempted back to run this local landmark. It has just been sold through licensed leisure specialists AG&G for close to £500,000.
Situated just off the town’s High Street and in a conservation area but not listed, the building sits on a 5,200 square foot (480 square metre) site, which includes ten parking spaces and a timber-decked trade garden. There is also spacious living accommodation on the first floor, with four double bedrooms. The town’s two railway stations are just half a mile away.
Set in the Surrey Hills some 25 miles from London, Dorking’s picturesque location, good transport links and vibrant history make it popular with visitors and as a dormitory town. It has a thriving shopping district, renowned for its antique dealers, and has attracted the attention of a long line of literary figures, from the poet John Keats to the novelist EM Forster.
“Dickens set part of The Pickwick Papers in the town. One of its characters was even based on a local publican. So the new landlady is part of a literary tradition,” says James Grimes, of AG&G. “This is part of a trend that is seeing people who have left the trade returning, as pubs that they could not previously have afforded or that were simply unavailable come onto the market.”