Family affair at town pub

NILABE120302b1, Official reopening of the Kings Head pub, Market Place,Ilkeston. Heather Greensmith and assistant manager Emma Neal.
NILABE120302b1, Official reopening of the Kings Head pub, Market Place,Ilkeston. Heather Greensmith and assistant manager Emma Neal.

THE NEW landlady of an Ilkeston town centre pub plans to turn its fortunes around after a major refurbishment.

Heather Greensmith, 30, learnt the ropes of the pub trade from her parents Ivan and Linda, who ran the Moon and Sixpence in Market Place from 1996 to 2000.

Having wanted to get the once-popular Market Place pub back on its feet since leaving Ilkeston, Heather has returned to make some big changes – starting with the name.

The pub is now known as The King’s Head – the original name given to it more than 150 years ago.

As well as the complete refit which has made the pub ‘totally unrecognisable’, punters can now expect homecooked food, cask ales, karaoke nights and DJs.

Heather explained: “I often come back to Ilkeston because it’s a fantastic night out and the people are great.

“But it used to break our hearts seeing the pub on its backside over the last few years.

“I hope we’ve made a welcoming place – a home from home for Ilkeston people – not the dark and dingy place it had become.”

Although the pub is owned by Punch Taverns, Heather, who took on the lease in November, has been given freedom to make decisions at the pub.

Food, which has not been offered since her parents ran it, is cooked in the new kitchen on-site and menus will change regularly.

Heather also hopes to introduce regular cask and guest ales, host DJs on Fridays and karaoke in the week.

Dad Ivan is still in the pub trade in Bramcote.

“People who knew my mum and dad will have great memories of their time here”, said Heather.

“I’m hopeful that the reputation we have will draw people in and keep them from travelling to Nottingham or Derby for their nights out.”

The King’s Head was officially opened on Friday.