ONE of York's best-loved historic pubs is to shut this weekend.

The Minster Inn in Marygate will close on Saturday night.

Its future is not yet clear.

Licensees Dave and Sally Roberts have run the pub for nearly 15 years but Mr Roberts said they had no option but to close.

He said their was a huge gap between their view of what was a fair rent and the view of the pub's owners Marston's.

He said: "I had to tell them that on Saturday night we will be closing to the public. I cannot carry on."

The Minster Inn opened in 1903, to replace a previous pub that sat on the opposite side of the road, against the walls of the grounds of St Mary's Abbey.

York Press: The Minster Inn, Marygate

It is widely regarded as one of the finest unaltered pubs in York.

Mrs Roberts has been unwell recently, meaning they have had to recruit more staff, but Mr Roberts said attempts to discuss the finances with Marston's had come to nothing.

He said Marston's had since visited the pub and replaced some of the interior doors with modern fire doors. He said he believed the pub may re-open with new tenants and with more focus on food.

York Press: Dave Roberts at the Minster Inn

Dave Roberts behind the bar at The Minster Inn in 2010

Mr Roberts said he and his wife had many happy memories at the pub.

He said: "We are very, very sorry to go and we have had all sorts of people coming in to see us, and in 14 years we have obviously known a lot of people.

"We were truly a community pub but if the money is not coming in, what do you do? We got to the stage where we just had to say we were shutting the door."

He said the pub had been owned by five different companies since he and his wife took over the lease in 2001. 

Local pub campaigners have applied for the pub to be recognised as an "asset of community value," which would make it harder for the owners to change its use. The application is due to be heard by City of York Council later this month.

  • The Press has invited Marston's Plc's media representatives to comment on what Mr Roberts has said, and on their plans for The Minster Inn. The company's response will be added to this article when it is available, which the firm has said is likely to be on Monday.