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The Flying Horse refurbishment

• Pubs and hotels

The Flying Horse pub, at Gatwick Airport’s South Terminal, reopened on Friday, March 31, following a £2.4 million refurbishment project.

An additional 60 full and part-time jobs have been created at the pub, with recruitment for the busy summer period still ongoing.

The new Wetherspoon pub will open with 150 staff, managed by pub manager Laura Beal, who also runs The Red Lion at Gatwick Airport’s North Terminal.

The Flying Horse, which first opened in May 2008, is still in the same location (after security), but has been refurbished and extended, providing a much larger customer area, as well as new kitchen facilities.

The 12-week refurbishment project, has seen the demolition and removal of the old outlet and complete rebuild, incorporating part of a neighbouring unit to create more space.

The bar design is much longer and more efficient, with a feature cellar to give customers an understanding of a working cellar and brewing of beers.

The larger kitchen is also fully open, providing a ‘theatre of food’ for the customers to see.

The pub is much lighter and brighter throughout, with a clever use of a false skylight to give the impression of daylight in what was once a dark environment. The front has also been finished with a timber pergola effect, to create an indoor garden feel.

The pub design also incorporates historical elements, including links to horse racing and the original racecourse that once stood on the site of Gatwick airport, reflected in equestrian themed artwork.

In 1890, the small hamlet of Gatwick was purchased by the Gatwick Race Course Company, which opened a race course there the following year. The Grand Stand alongside the course now lies under the South Terminal.

Pub manager Laura Beal said: “Wetherspoon has spent £2.4 million on the new pub, creating more jobs for local people and providing further investment.

“Myself and my team are looking forward to welcoming customers back into The Flying Horse and we are confident that they will be impressed by the transformation of the outlet.”