The licensees of a re-opened Otley pub have been praised for keeping its character following a major refurbishment.

The Yew Tree Inn was opened up again, following a two-week closure to allow the revamp by owners Punch Taverns and landlord and landlady Barry and Linda Tomlinson, last Thursday, February 27. Roger Blackburn and Brian Bentley, who have been customers at the Newall Carr Road pub since 1972, were invited to cut the ribbon at the re-opening ceremony.

Mr Tomlinson said: “The pub has been redecorated in a traditional style, giving it a fresher look, with new toilets installed and some of the fixed seating removed to make way for an open-plan area with new furniture.

“Our customers love the fresher look, but are really pleased that we have kept the warm and friendly feel. The fireplace, especially, is now a focal point.”

Otley Pub Club’s membership secretary, Bob Brook, said: “It was great to see so many people enjoying the newly refurbished Yew Tree. The new layout is bright, as well as being more flexible and able to cope with more people.

“The customers I spoke to were especially impressed with the new fire, that seemed to keep the whole building warm, the new toilets – and of course the buffet, which was delicious.”

MP Greg Mulholland (Lib Dem, Leeds North West) – the club’s honorary president – said: “Congratulations to Linda and Barry on the excellent refurbishment. It has retained the character of the pub.”