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16th March 2017

Red Oak Taverns Breathes New Life into Oldest Pub in Berkhamsted

Red Oak Taverns, one of the UK’s leading pub companies, together with new licensees, Russell and Michelle North, have given a new lease of life to The Bull, an historic pub in Berkhamsted.     Following a six-figure investment, the pub, which had fallen into disrepair, has been brought back to its former glory and has just re-opened.

The Bull was bought by Red Oak Taverns in 2015 as part of the 146 pub portfolio purchased from GRS.   The running of the pub is a family affair with three generations involved in operating the business and serving customers.

Mark Grunnell, Director of Red Oak Taverns comments:  “It’s great to be able to breathe life back into a fantastic historic community pub and is a perfect example of the success of the collaborative approach on which we pride ourselves, benefiting us and our tenant partners.”

He added, “Over the past six years, we have built our portfolio from 32 to 170 outlets and we are now on the acquisition trail, having transformed many un-loved pubs back into thriving concerns in the heart of their communities.  We’ve achieved this through investment and working together with our licensees.”

Michelle North of The Bull, agrees:  “We worked very closely with Red Oak Taverns to bring The Bull back to life.  We have installed a new kitchen, created a decking area which can seat 50 people and will be fantastic in the summer, as well as totally re-furbishing the interiors.  Red Oak Taverns has been great to work with throughout the whole process, listening to what we wanted and helping create the welcoming atmosphere that we desired.”

The Bull backs onto the Grand Union Canal.  Archive records show that it was in use as a pub as long ago as 1535.

Home prepared food is served daily and the couple’s son, Jake, is the bar manager and has created a cocktail menu that is proving extremely popular with customers.  Michelle bakes a variety of cakes on the premises with a range of teas and coffees also on offer.  This provides parents with the chance of post-school run refreshments. The Bull also has carefully planned lunch and dinner menus.


The Bull

10 High St, Berkhamsted


Tel: 01442 767440



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Notes to editors

Background Red Oak Taverns

Formed in 2011 by Aaron Brown and Mark Grunnell, Red Oak Taverns is an entrepreneurial national pub company which comprises 170 mainly leased and tenanted pubs, but also includes several managed and franchised venues.  The Company is privately-owned by its co-founders and a small number of like-minded individual investors.   The pub estate is mainly concentrated in the South, South West, North West and the Midlands.


Further details can be found on the Company’s website:


For further press information or interviews with Mark Grunnell, Red Oak Taverns or Russell or Michelle North, The Bull, contact:


Gill Shaffer

Mint Communications

Mobile: 00 44 (0) 7958 989124 or (00(0)1799 218353



Date of issue: March 2017