Wall collapse bar ‘ruined’

Oscars in Alnwick.
Oscars in Alnwick.

A bar which was shut after its outside wall partially collapsed has called time after an insurance claim for the work was declined.

Part of the gable-end wall of Oscar’s on Narrowgate, Alnwick, fell down into Bow Alley after a night of heavy rain in October.

The bar was closed after the collapse and at the end November work was started to remove the rubble that came down and make the building structurally safe.

Contractors were put in place by Northumberland County Council to make the building safe, and the bill was sent to the owners.

However owner Derek Charlton’s insurance company has declined to pay out for the work as it says the collapse was due to a pre-existing problem.

And to add insult to injury thousands of pounds worth of equipment and belongings which were inside the bar have been stolen.

Mr Charlton said: “It’s devastating.

“Up to now we have bills of around £50,000 from Northumberland County Council for the work that has been done so far.

“The building has been absolutely wrecked inside as a result of the steel structure that the specialists recommended.

“But now the building is derelict.

“And while the work was being done thousands of pounds worth of things were stolen and there is a police investigation ongoing.

“But because there was no forced entry or violence the insurance company will not pay out on that either.

“There is no hope of recovery for the business. It’s such a shame.

“The business is ruined and we are financially ruined.

“We just feel absolutely gutted.”

The bar posted about the closure on Facebook on Sunday, with customers commenting to express their sadness at the move.

Richard A Lillico said: “Devastating news just before Christmas. Will miss the place.”

Cheryl Julian-Bonham: “That’s sad news Derek. But will always have some wonderful memories of Oscars. Sorry to hear you will not reopen xxx.”

Jenny Jones: “Oh no!! Gutted to read this!!”