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BITE bites the dust???? with RealAleRobUK on the Pub Forum

Picture of The Grand Hotel
Image posted by Paul Brett
Submitted on Tuesday, 23rd February 2010
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The Grand Hotel, Bishop Auckland

South Church
Bishop Auckland
DL14 6DU
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Reviews of The Grand Hotel (Average Rating: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Richard Lee left this review about The Grand Hotel

The Grand is, what the Grand is - Probably the best live music venue in Bishop Auckland.

My friends and I have been occasional Saturday night visitors for the last few years, and only come to see the bands that we know we will enjoy. So unlike the other reviewers, I feel I can make comment on when the pub is at its best.
First, I would like to point out, that this is not one of the northeasts hidden gems. Dispite the fancy exterior, inside it is neither luxurious or full of character. Its pretty spartan, though since it was taken over (indeed by a relativly young couple) it is far better than it was. The overall standard of the place is improving, with the new management at least trying to make a difference. The decor has been updated, and the overall standards have improved. Above all, it is clean and pleasant, if a little bare. Perhaps a few pictures may help?
The biggest change in recent times has been in the quality of the drink. Although the main incentive for me to visit is for the music, it is nice to see that the beer has improved, in both taste and range. I'm not an ale drinker, but there were 4 handpulls in place and there seemed to be a good number of people drinking them, which I would take to be a good sign. The lagers offered were Budweiser Budvar (excellent quality) and Carling. Prices are very reasonable. Before Christmas, I have to say that at times I would have drank bottles of Magners in here, rather than tolerate the Carling. But give the new owners their due, they have turned this around, and I hope others will give them a chance.
Staff were efficient and pleasant, couldnt ask for more.

The band (Victims of Fury) were excellent, and the large side room is a great venue, easily the best in the area, and the black backdrop really helps. As others have said, the furnture is a little basic, but it serves a purpose.

I would urge people to give a saturday night down there a go. You really won't be disappointed.

On 21st February 2011 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1 recommendations about 1 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Andrew Cameron left this review about The Grand Hotel

Theres certainly been a few changes at the Grand since the last review. Rumours of closure had hung over the place since long before Christmas, and the future was looking bleak. So it was with some trepidation that I made the walk down. Interestingly, it features in this years Good Beer Guide, but I didn't hold high hopes.

I was pleasantly surprised though by my early evening visit. A young (early 20's?) couple seem to have taken the place over recently, and noticable changes have already been made. The walls have been repainted tastefully, though the place still looks a little sparse. But it is at least clean, and subtle. Toilets are still a little primitive, the furnishings a little basic but these things take time, and in (what I am told) is a short space of time, a lot has already been achieved.

There were still 3 ales on, (from Skipton, Hobgoblin and Camerons), and a small collection of pumpclips from other breweries on display. Most assuringly was a sign declaring "a Pub is for life" suggesting that the Grand may not be up for the rumoured imminent closing. I had the Strongarm (quite a rarity on Handpull these days) it was perfectly acceptable, and you can't complain at under £2 a pint. They also advertised a range of bottled beers, and a real cider, but perhaps the cider was out of stock. Usual Carling and JS, as well as Woodpecker cider, but most surprisingly, no premium brand of Lager.

Clientelle was mixed, with some very young lads playing pool. At first I was a bit put off by this, but they kept themselves quiet, were only drinking soft drinks, and it was easy to forget they were there. Other than that, a few old boys and middle aged, predominently men were watching the football results come in. A quick look at the back room (with speakers and black backdrop to the stage), suggests that the live music (for which the Grand is well known) is to remain. Outside, the blackboards advertise Karaoke nights as well.

Finally, I think a repeat visit is needed to truly judge it, Saturday nghts are the Grands strength, and I was there too early to see just how it is at its best, but its a promising start, for what was once a hidden gem in Bishop.

It may still fall well short of being "Grand" but its progress.

On 19th January 2011 - rating: 7
[User has posted 3 recommendations about 3 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Roger Button left this review about The Grand Hotel

A decent hike from the centre of town, the Grand can be found round the back of an Asda store and under the rail bridge. Built in 1901 it certainly looks like it has seen better days but my main reason for visiting was its glowing report in the Good Beer Guide. It seems like I called at a bad time selection wise as there was only 1 ale on out of 3 pumps which in itself didn’t seem particularly generous for somewhere that is supposed to be one of the town’s better ale outlets. The place seems to showcase the local Yard Of Ale Brewery but just the Spring Triple Tipple was on (which was admittedly excellent despite the huge head) with a new brew called Yard’s Bird not ready. The chap behind the bar told me they usually have a stout as well. The interior is predominatly light blue with modern artwork that fails to mask the vast expanses of wallspace that makes the place feel very empty. I’m not sure if there is a restoration programme being undertaken but parts of the interior came over as semi-derelict with patches of plaster hanging off the ceiling and exposed wiring not making it a particularly picturesque place to hang around for a few pints. The main bar contains a pool table and basic TV whilst the larger side room with somewhat barren seating had a darts area and low stage for live music. I came here with high hopes but really don’t think I found the place at its best and it would be interesting to see what future reviewers think. As things stand, I found it hugely disappointing but would probably give it another go if I was in the area, sufficient time had elapsed for any necessary internal improvements and further reports suggested it would be worth the effort.

On 7th July 2010 - rating: 4
[User has posted 1239 recommendations about 1233 pubs]

External web links for The Grand Hotel

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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location is best guess
Bishop Auckland, 0.56 miles, 10 min walk (show)
Bishop Auckland, 0.56 miles, 10 min walk (show)
Shildon, 2.78 miles, 53 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The Grand Hotel, Bishop Auckland
1st Jun 2011, 21:07
Request to add pub to area Bishop Auckland Town by David McNally approved
 
1st Jun 2011, 21:07
Request to add pub to area Bishop Auckland Town by David McNally

Pub Details

Pub details supplied by members of this site to the best of their knowledge. Please check with pub directly before making a special trip.

  • Karaoke : Yes last updated 19 January 2011 by Dave McNally
  • Pool Table : Yes last updated 19 January 2011 by hondo .
  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 19 January 2011 by hondo .
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