After nearly five years of running The Red Lion pub in St Mary’s Road, Ealing, current tenants Edin Basic and Barbara have handed back their lease to pub owner Fuller’s who say they will “re-let shortly and anticipate that it will reopen with a new tenant, and an exciting new offer, towards the end of February.”
In a notice posted by the couple on the pub’s door, they say of the closing on 12 January 2023: “In the light of the soaring cost increases of energy and food/drinks, inflation and raising [sic] cost of living it made it impossible to continue trading. We will be handing over the lease back to Fuller’s. It has been an incredible 4.5 years of running this beautiful pub and be part of the community. We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.”
During their tenancy, the pub changed its menu to reflect pizza. Many regulars say they will miss having pizza but others are looking forward to returning to a more traditional pub menu.
The couple posted on The Red Lion Facebook page saying: “t was an incredible journey to be part of the Ealing community and running the local for almost 5 years. It was also a responsibility to maintain the history and heritage of this institution, so much history. We tried our best. It’s hard to part from something we are so emotionally attached to. Pizza Madre, Red Lion, people, the families we met, but we are moving on. We sincerely hope to see this historic pub re-opening the door and being the part of the community again. I am sure it will.”
One person replied: “Quite sad we used to walk here from our hotel when we visited we much preferred it as a pub rather than a pizza place would love to see it return as a classic British Pub in the future.”
Another added: “Sad to see this news. You did fabulous work during lockdown, great produce in the shop. Loved Sunday lunches especially the live jazz so you will be missed. Good luck in your new adventures. Hope the historic pub returns again.”
Commenting on the temporary closure of The Red Lion, a Fuller’s spokesperson told EALING.NEWS: “Our tenant at The Red Lion has come to the end of his lease and decided not to renew. This gives us a good opportunity to make some improvements in the pub and we are going to be investing – especially in the kitchen. We expect to have the pub re-let shortly and anticipate that it will reopen with a new tenant, and an exciting new offer, towards the end of February.”
The Red Lion is also locally known as Stage Six. It is across the road from Ealing Studios which originally had five stages and the Red Lion was the local for the famous stars who made films at the studios which included Sir Alec Guinness and Sid James.
The pub’s interior pays tribute to the world of movies with portraits and stills on its walls.