The Princess Rawdon: Much-loved Leeds pub reopens under new ownership
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Appointed at the helm of the Apperley Lane pub is 32-year-old Luke Sullivan, a project and account manager by trade who joined the pub as front-of-house manager in September. He got the keys to the Princess last week and the pub reopened on Thursday.
Luke told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “I had the experience of being in the business before, and I wanted the responsibility to be more of a decision maker - and bring an improvement to the community. I have a really good relationship and rapport with the community and that was the main thing that pulled me back.
“I want customers to feel welcomed and valued when they step through the door. We’ve got a lot of people who are career-driven and work hard for their money, and if they’re choosing to come and spend that with us, then we need to give them reasons to keep coming back.”
Working with the new owners, who Luke said were “really supportive”, Luke’s priority has been recruiting a new team and getting the pub back open - but he has exciting plans down the line. From improving the pub’s events space to adapting the food menu, he wants to be led by the people of Rawdon.
“I’ve been finding out a lot about Rawdon this week,” Luke added. “I’ve found really good food, and the people have been so friendly and supportive. It’s somewhere you can settle in quickly which is due to the nature of the people.
“We’re really looking forward to welcoming everybody back through the doors. If anyone in the community needs support or help, or wants to drop me a message, then I’m more than prepared to give my time back.
“It’s been a busy week - we’ve had to roll our sleeves up and get stuck in, trying to drive improvement with the time and resources we’ve got. We’ve got a list to get through, so change will come in time, but we’re ready to deliver for the people - and happy to be back.”