Campaigners have welcomed the continuing resurgence of a city centre pub that looked doomed only a year ago.
Owners of the revived Jacob’s are toasting the pub’s future after surviving their first year.
Landlady Christina Wagstaff is celebrating the run-up to the landmark anniversary by investing in a new kitchen and announcing plans to hold a three-day beer festival later this year.
Those who have been working towards the revival of Bradford’s pubs and restaurants through the Taste of Bradford campaign have welcomed the pub’s success.
Colin Philpott, chief executive of Bradford Breakthrough, said: “We need more choice in the city and we need Bradford to become a destination in which people want to spend their leisure time.
“With the reopening of pubs such as Jacob’s we have a real chance of succeeding in our campaign to fulfil our desire to see Bradford as a city centre with a lot to offer.”
CAMRA spokesman Bill Arnold said: “I put their success down to hard work and dedication. Sticking to the cause of supporting real ale has paid off and it’s great news. Word of mouth is obviously working for them. Customers are enjoying themselves, coming back and telling others – that’s how it works. Real ale is the future and it’ll be here to stay – like Jacob’s.”
Mrs Wagstaff and her business partner husband William, who also runs The New Beehive in Westgate, organised a party to say cheers to loyal supporters.
Among the guests were former Lord Mayor of Bradford Robert Sowman, whose grandson Matthew Fox is a Jacob's barman. The old Jacob’s Well was a popular haunt of Mr Sowman’s during his time at City Hall.
Mr Sowman said: “After using it for 26 years while I was a councillor it will always have very happy memories for me – it was a great place to get over the tension of heavy meetings! It’s good to be back and see it reopened and thriving, It’s a landmark Bradford pub.”
Mrs Wagstaff said: “When we first bought it we decided we would give it a year to see if it was viable. The first few months were particularly hard when sometimes I could be on the bar by myself for up to six hours without a single customer! But all that time I was supported emotionally by family and by many lovely people who genuinely wanted Jacobs and the city centre to thrive.”