15 January 2014

McMullen buys Old Bank of England in landmark deal

The venerable Old Bank of England pub on Fleet Street has been bought by Hertfordshire brewers and pub/bar operator McMullen in an off-market investment deal brokered by licensed leisure specialists AG&G.

The freehold transaction is believed to have been one of the highest prices paid for a public house in 2013, at a price exceeding £8.6 million which equates to a sub 4% net initial yield.

“It’s a very significant deal for McMullen,” says AG&G’s James Grimes. “This is a landmark building that is drenched in history – and customers. The contract also includes the freehold of 1 Bell Yard next door.”

The acquisition is McMullen’s fifth since last summer. Managing director Peter Furness-Smith says, “We are delighted to have purchased the freehold interest in excellent pubs.”

The Old Bank of England, with its magnificent interior, summer courtyard and exceptional function rooms, is exactly what it says. For nearly a century until 1975, this was the Law Courts’ branch of the Bank of England.

By becoming a pub, the site returned to its 16th and 17th century roots, when the Cock and the Haunch of Venison stood on the site. The buildings also stood between what is said to be Sweeney Todd’s barber shop and his mistress Mrs Lovett’s victuals shop. In the tunnels and vaults running between the two, the demon barber of Fleet Street dispatched his victims, to be served as pies to Mrs Lovett’s hungry customers.

For further information, contact James Grimes on 020 7836 7826 or e-mail james.grimes@agg.uk.com

AG&G are chartered surveyors specialising in the licensed leisure industry, with the skill and experience needed to value, assess or promote a property not simply as bricks and mortar but as a business. If it involves the price of a licensed premises, its profitability, rental value, investment prospects or value in a dispute, AG&G can help.

8 Exchange Court,
London, WC2R 0JH