THE Gardeners Arms on Deansgate in Timperley is having a £130,000 makeover to restore it to its former glory as a great community pub.

The pub is expected to reopen in early April under the new stewardship of life-long Timperley residents, Alan and Fran Bates. Running the pub will be a family affair with the Bates’ son, David, in charge of the bar.

The pub has been without steady licensees for two years.

Alan, a chef, and Fran, a teaching assistant, were inspired to take over the Gardeners Arms by their desire to turn it back into the thriving neighbourhood local they remembered from years gone by.

Alan said: “I’ve known the Gardeners Arms all my life and lived on the same road for the past 30 years. We just want to make it an asset for the area again - a friendly pub with a great atmosphere that the whole community can use, enjoy and be proud of.”

The pub boasts a taproom or vault, lounge bar and dining room. Funds are being spent on completely redecorating inside and out, new toilets, baby changing facilities and furniture and the installation of a kitchen to enable the pub to serve food. Wi-Fi is also being put in as well as Sky in the pub’s taproom.

Alan - who, like Fran, will be running a pub for the first time - added: “All the Gardeners Arms lacked was investment and some tender loving care.

“Star Pubs & Bars are putting in the investment and we will certainly be putting in lots of tender loving care. It’s very exciting to see our dreams for our first pub becoming a reality before our eyes, it’s going to be quite a transformation.”

Chris Jowsey, trading director of Star Pubs & Bars, said: “We’re delighted that such committed and enthusiastic operators as Alan and Fran have taken on the Gardeners Arms and that together we are investing in its long term future for residents and visitors to Timperley.

“It’s tough running a pub with increasing competition for consumer’s disposable income.

“To be successful in today’s market, pubs must improve their offering to customers and this means investing in pubs like the Gardeners Arms to create a welcoming and relevant environment for all customers.

“Heineken is a passionate supporter of the great British pub. We have invested £600m purchasing and improving our Star Pubs & Bars estate since 2010 and this year will be investing more than ever in our pubs.

“We now own around 1,250 pubs like the Gardeners Arms, the majority of which are operated as small independent businesses. What we need is real investment, innovation and professionalism in the pub sector to continue to attract customers back to the great British pub.”