Geordie firm helps fans who don’t want to say ‘auf wiedersehen’ to TV pub
Lawyers rarely have a positive public image, so the profession might owe a debt of gratitude to Newcastle solicitors’ firm Muckle, which is providing free advice to a group trying to save a bit of 1980s television history.
The firm has joined campaigners who are trying to save the pub that featured in the second series of ITV sitcom Auf Wiedersehen, Pet. The Windmill Inn in Redmile, Leicestershire, is apparently threatened with the destiny that faces so many older buildings in the modern age – being bulldozed for housing development.
The Windmill is better known to fans of the programme – which was broadcast between 1983 and 1986 – as the Barley Mow, the pub where the seven mostly Geordie builders stayed while renovating Thornley Manor.
The firm has agreed to assist the fans to form a community benefit society, which will issue community shares. Muckle has agreed to provide advice on the structure of the bid by the fans’ consortium, which is trying to raise £500,000 to buy the pub.
“Being a Newcastle law firm we are very aware of the sentiment behind Auf Wiedersehen, Pet; its cult status and enduring popularity around the world,” says John Devine, partner at Muckle. “For fans of the show, the Barley Mow is truly an iconic location, so we are keeping our fingers crossed the consortium’s bid to retain the pub and its place in the community in Redmile will be successful.”
Truss surfaces in Walsall
Bar leaders, some newspapers and even the odd fellow cabinet member may be calling for Liz Truss to be sacked, but at least the lord chancellor has some friends in the West Midlands.
Eddie Hughes and James Bird, Conservative party general election candidates in the constituencies of Walsall North and Walsall South, respectively, asked the beleaguered justice secretary to lend a hand with local campaigning.
Truss, whose own constituency in South West Norfolk is miles away, has not had the happiest of stints as lord chancellor. She came under fire for allegedly showing insufficient support for the High Court judges handed down the first Brexit article 50 ruling when they were attacked by segments of the media. She has also been criticised over prison policy and for appearing to have a shaky grip on the state of plans to allow witnesses in rape trials to give evidence by video link.
But all is forgiven in Walsall. Truss told the Express & Star that she and the two local Tory candidates “had a very positive reaction doorstepping around Walsall … This is historically a Labour area, but people are concerned about Jeremy Corbyn and his plans”.
Truss even tackled the thorny issue of the riot at the end of last year at Winson Green prison in Birmingham. An investigation was “a high priority”, she told the newspaper.