THE future of a number of Worcestershire pubs could be in doubt after its owners announced nationally it would be closing a number of venues.

Only one of Worcester's Greene King pubs, The Talbot in Barbourne Road, confirmed they were not closing yesterday.

The company, which has an estate of almost 1,700 managed pubs and 1,000 tenanted venues across Britain, owns Ye Olde Talbot in Friar Street, Glovers Needle in Windermere Drive, Bluebell Farm in Hornhill Road, and the Fox Inn in Bransford in the city.

The firm has started a redundancy consultation with 800 employees nationally, and the locations of the pubs that Greene King plans to shut have not yet been revealed.

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The pubs were contacted, and most directed us to the press office or declined to comment when approached yesterday.

But in what appears positive news the pubs are currently open while the company's statement, released on Wednesday, said the 79 closing nationally would be kept shut, having not opened after lockdown.

A spokesman for Greene King said: “The continued tightening of the trading restrictions for pubs, which may last another six months, along with the changes to government support was always going to make it a challenge to reopen some of our pubs.

“Therefore, we have made the difficult decision not to reopen 79 sites, including the 11 Loch Fyne restaurants we announced last week. Around one-third will be closed permanently and we hope to be able to reopen the others in the future.

“We are working hard with our teams to try and find them a role in another of our pubs wherever possible. We urgently need the government to step in and provide tailored support to help the sector get through to the spring and prevent further pub closures and job losses.”