May 4, 2022 6.30 pm This story is over 24 months old

Lincoln pub will be ‘unrecognisable’ when it reopens with new name

Tap & Spile will become The White Horse

A Lincoln landlord is “ready for a new challenge” as he prepares for big changes to make The Tap & Spile “unrecognisable”, including returning it to its original name of The White Horse when it reopens in the coming months.

Gordon Reeves worked as the General Manager at Dogma for five years from 2003 before spending 13 years as landlord of The Princes of Wales Inn in Lincoln’s Bailgate. The Prince of Wales reopened under new management on May 4.

Gordon is now focusing on his new venture after leasing the Tap & Spile pub on Hungate from its private owner. Joining Gordon will be head chef Christian Dawes and pub manager Simon Chester, both of whom he worked with at The Prince of Wales.

Christian worked as head chef at the Prince for over 10 years with Gordon, while Simon was the former licencee for more than a decade, and the trio will continue their good team work together after leaving the pub in Lincoln’s Bailgate.

Gordon told The Lincolnite he hopes to open The White Horse by this summer and “will be unrecognisable from what it was before”, but before then he said a total refurbishment and new interior is needed.

He said: “In a city with as much history as Lincoln it seems the right thing to do (changing the name) to restore the building’s historic connections.

“We met some great people and great customers (at the Prince) and anybody who enjoyed what we did at the Prince will certainly enjoy what we do here.

“As we are fully independent, we have got the freedom to do what we want to, and what our customers want, without constraints and we will be able to offer a wider selection of beer and other drinks.”

The new landlord will be changing the name of the Tap & Spile on Hungate to The White Horse. | Photo: The Lincolnite

The original pub was called The White Horse over 200 years ago and kept the same name when it was rebuilt in around 1920s, Gordon added. He described the Tap & Spile as a “failed brand from the 80s” and said he will “do everything differently” at The White Horse.

Gordon said he is also hoping to introduce a new food offering, with a modern menu to be confirmed in the future, as well as a wider variety of drinks including a dozen different beers on tap.

When asked whether live music will remain at the pub, new landlord Gordon said: “There will be live music here in some shape or form.”

He added that his friend Adrian Lucas now has the old mahogany bar top from the Tap & Spile and will use it to make a guitar which he will later play in The White Horse.

The Tap & Spile closed back in 2018 before reopening in February of the following year when Adam Kay took over the reigns with his brother Matthew.

Then in October 2019, The Tap & Spile shared a post on Facebook from the pub’s manager Harry Blackadder telling customers it would close in October 2019. The pub did reopen again but closed in October 2021 when the previous tenants left.

The popular pub known for live music had reopened in December 2021 with new landlord and landlady Brett Morrison and Stacey Whitehead, who later moved on to take over at The Bottle and Glass in Scothern.