THE Victoria Vaults will go from strength to strength as a live music venue.

So promises new co-licensee Anna Broadhurst, who has taken over from Pete Connell and will be responsible mainly for the music side of the 19th century pub in Nunnery Lane, York.

“I’m well into my music, especially the live variety, and my beer, particularly the real variety,” says Anna, 33, who has a degree in criminology by the way. “In September 2017 I started working here for a friend who had just taken the place over.

“Initially I was just working once or twice a week as a bit of a stopgap before I started working for the North Yorkshire Police. I’d graduated from the University of York in 2017 with my criminology degree – which I guess should qualify me for running a pub! – so that’s the route I was going to go down. However, I gradually started to get more and more involved by putting myself down to work more shifts, and then further involved with the actual running and operation of the place.”

Last October, Anna heard that “half the pub was up for sale”. “I really didn’t even think anything of it, apart from the fact that I’d be getting a new boss! I would never have believed that I could actually become the boss! Out of the blue however, a friend of my partner suggested I’d be the perfect candidate to take over, and not only that, he was prepared to invest in me to do so. And so here I am.”

York Press:

"My ambition is to create a real live music venue, featuring name artists and the top tribute bands," says Anna Broadhurst, of her wishes for the Victoria Vaults

In the past, the Victoria Vaults has been associated with presenting local covers bands. “That was fine, but my ambition is to create a real live music venue, featuring name artists and the top tribute bands, as well as supporting up-and-coming young local talent,” says Anna.

“In 2018, we booked the UK Subs, The Godfathers, 999, The Lurkers and even Bez from Happy Mondays! On the tribute act side, we’ve had The Small Fakers, The Sex Pistols Experience and Oasis Maybe, among others. All of them up close and personal with your friends, with a buzzing atmosphere right next to the bands. Getting your album signed, chatting with the artists, no problem! I love it when we have nights like that, they really are special events, and I want to create more of them.”

Anna welcomes feedback on bands booked, beers sold, and “everything else for that matter”. “We’ll be asking customers regularly on our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts for their input, but people should also feel free to try the old-fashioned way and come in and speak to us. We’re very friendly,” she says. “And with my passion for real ale, I’ll be bringing in different ales for our customers to try, as I want to ensure we have a varied drinks selection on all the time.”

What might 2019 bring? “We’re planning to extend our opening hours in order to include speed quizzing, gamers’ nights, open-mic nights, comedy nights and more,” says Anna. “As I say, you tell us, we’d love your input.”

York Press:

Prizes to win: A vinyl copy of the Sid & Nancy soundtrack, Love Kills, and tickets for The Sex Pistols Experience at the Victoria Vaults

PUNK tribute act The Sex Pistols Experience return to the Victoria Vaults on January 19 with their Anarchy In The E.U. brio after a cracking sold-out gig last July.

In the line-up will be singer Johnny Rotter’s Johnny Rotten; bass player Kid Vicious’s Sid Vicious; guitarist Steve Clones’ Steve Jones and drummer Paul Crook’s Paul Cook. Supporting them on the night will be Scarborough garage rockers The Vasolators. Tickets are on sale at £12 at

Courtesy of gig co-promoter Dave Sollitt and Vinyl Eddie, from Vinyl Eddie’s record shop in Tadcaster Road, The Press has one pair of tickets for January 19 to be won, along with a vinyl copy of Sid & Nancy, Love Kills, The Official Soundtrack.

Competition question: Which 2018 Oscar winner and 1979 York Theatre Royal pantomime cat in Dick Whittington starred as Sid Vicious in Alex Cox’s 1986 film Sid & Nancy?

Send your answer, with your name, address and daytime phone number, either on a postcard to Charles Hutchinson, Pistols Competition, The Press, 84-86 Walmgate, York, YO1 9YN, or by email to, marked Pistols Competition, by January 14. Usual competition rules apply.