Kirkstall: End of an era and fresh start at The West End House


It was the end of an era at The West End House in Kirkstall as landlords Robert Trainor and Paul Gill left the pub after 25 years as part of the community, writes JILL BUCKLEY. But they’ve left it in safe hands with legendary barmaid Tammy Gibson taking over the reins.

Robert and Paul were presented with a certificate marking their 25 years at the helm from Leeds CAMRA at a celebration to mark their time at the pub.

Handover: Robert Trainor and Paul Gill with Tammy Gibson

Last Tuesday quizmaster Robert hosted his last ever West End quiz. And the following Saturday West Leeds Dispatch was there for the official “re-opening” with Tammy and Lord Mayor Councillor Jane Dowson. Cllr Dowson said:

“I was very happy to witness the handing on of the baton at this popular local pub to a familiar face in the community. I would like to wish Tammy Gibson every success as the new Landlady of the West End.”

Robert and Paul are moving on to new adventures after their 25 years as part of the West Leeds community. Whilst they are sad to leave it is time for new challenges. And there was some humour added to the situation as the handing over became known as “WEXIT”! Robert said:

“We won’t miss the day to day running of the pub but we will miss the West End family; staff, friends, customers, all the people we’ve met over the past 25 years. And, of course, we wish Tammy success for the future.”

So on to the future and a new era at this historic pub. And barmaid of 15 years Tammy, who joins a prestigious list of landlords and landladies over the years, is looking forward to the next chapter in this pub’s history.

west end opening tammy gibson
New West End landlady Tammy Gibson cuts the ribbon on her tenure with Leeds Lord Mayor Jayne Dowson.

There was a huge turnout to show their support on Saturday evening for a celebration of her new tenure:

“I’m very happy to be taking over a well established community pub and I’ve been taught well by the boys. After 15 years I decided to keep the torch burning.”

west end staff past and present
Celebration: West End staff past and present gathered to welcome new owner Tammy Gibson.

Rich history

The West End House has been part of the Kirkstall Community since 1867, when it was first listed as a beer house.

Its first licensee was William Tordoff, and several of the streets around, building of which began in 1872, are named after him. He was part of a family of West Leeds licensees with his brothers Ben, Wilfred and Walter being licensees at pubs in Stanningley, Bramley and Armley respectively.

All change at the West End House Pub in Kirkstall.

The premises were also used for many years as headquarters for Masonic Lodges and societies between 1899 and 1922 when the pub changed its name to the West End Inn, with the National Independent Order of Oddfellows, The Druids Lodge and the Steam Engine Workers Society all meeting there.

Kirkstall Brewery, which was then housed in their premises at the junction of Broad Lane and Wyther Lane and is now student accommodation, supplied beer to the pub between 1867 and 1936 and there is a whole host of memorabilia from the brewery’s original incarnation in the pub.

West End opening

The West End House is open from 11.30am until late seven days a week, offering a variety of drinks, including four real ales. Food is served every day.

There are quiz nights on Tuesdays and Thursdays and live sport with Sky Sports having recently been re-installed at the venue. For more information visit the pub’s website.






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