Broads pub's future in safe hands

With its tranquil waterside setting it assuredly counts as one of the Broads most iconic pubs, popular with generations of boating holidaymakers.And it even entered regional folklore as the place an 11-year-old Prince of Wales once stayed, only to be ticked off by the landlady for a noisy pillow fight.

With its tranquil waterside setting it assuredly counts as one of the Broads most iconic pubs, popular with generations of boating holidaymakers.

And it even entered regional folklore as the place an 11-year-old Prince of Wales once stayed, only to be ticked off by the landlady for a noisy pillow fight.

But the decades of happy memories and history surrounding Hickling's Pleasure Boat Inn appeared under serious threat when it closed for several months last year following the eviction of the previous landlady in a financial wrangle with the pub company Enterprise Inns.

But this week, the pub's long-term future was secured when local businessman John Uff, 47, finally completed a deal to buy it for a large six-figure sum and run it as a freehouse.

His friend Paul Thurston, 57, who re-opened the broadside pub last summer as the tenant of Enterprise Inns, will carry on as landlord.

Mr Thurston was landlord of the successful Nelson Head, in nearby Horsey, several years ago when he first became acquainted with Mr Uff who runs his email delivery company in the village.