The White Lodge reopens in Attleborough

Johnson Reed
2m read

Dating back to the 15th century, The White Lodge originally stood as a coaching inn for travellers and their horses on the commute between Norwich and London. The Grade II building was passed through various owners before eventually closing in 2014, in need of some desperate renovation and TLC.
Keen to restore the unique building to its prime condition, Enterprise Inns approached Grahame and Victoria MacDonald to become The White Lodge’s new proprietors. The husband-and-wife team have worked with Enterprise for almost five years, as publicans of The Cellar House in Eaton. The couple have since taken on another pub, The Old Ram in Tivetsall St. Mary, and have a combined 40 years’ experience in hospitality. 2015 saw Victoria receive the coveted Enterprise Community Heroes Award after agreeing to take on the local Post Office and run it from within The Cellar House. The pub also plays host to a range of local groups and activities, from local cricket teams to the ukulele club!
Prior to reopening under the MacDonalds, The White Lodge underwent a huge £350,000 renovation. Enterprise Inns fully redecorated and refurbished the interior, whilst taking care not the diminish the building’s original features. The new cosy, rustic interior perfectly incorporates the old open fireplaces, low ceiling beams and dark wooden furnishings. The roof has also been fully rethatched, and the venue now includes a snug, two bar areas, and a large beer garden.
The kitchen was fully refitted by Yorkshire Catering Equipment, and Grahame turned to Johnson Reed for help financing this part of the operation. He was put in touch with Ian, who quickly and easily arranged a lease agreement. This allowed The White Lodge to open their kitchen quickly with the equipment they needed, without having to eat into vital cash reserves in the early stages of opening.
“Ian provided excellent customer service from the moment I first called him,” said Grahame, “We have dealt with some leasing companies in the past and never felt overly confident. Ian talked us through the process, explained clearly how it all happens and he’s been really supportive throughout.”
Just a few of weeks in, and The White Lodge is proving to be an extremely popular and has received an overwhelmingly warm welcome and a great deal of support from the local community. Work is still ongoing, and Grahame and Victoria hope to apply for a licence to host weddings in their function room, as well as eventually re-open the grounds to camping and campervans.  With new estates currently underway in the surrounding areas, Attleborough is a town on the rise, and it looks like The White Lodge will make a very popular watering hole indeed!
Look at the incredible transformation in the gallery below.