A 150-year-old pub that has been closed for six months will finally re-open this weekend under a new landlord, it has been announced.

The Woodman’s Arms, in Rayleigh Road, Thundersley, closed suddenly in October leaving regulars and loyal customers gutted.

Since its closure, residents, councillors and Castle Point MP Rebecca Harris have campaigned for the pub to re-open as soon as possible and presented a petition to the brewery behind the pub, Star Pubs.

Now, Star Pubs has confirmed the beloved pub will be “re-opening this weekend” with a new landlord and the final touches are being put on the inside of the pub to celebrate.

Ms Harris said: “This is fantastic news.

“The previous landlady put her heart and soul into the pub, and it was really appreciated by the community.

“I hope the new landlords will make the community feel just as welcome and I wish them the best of luck.”

Benfleet resident and campaigner, Michael Dixon, also pushed for the pub to re-open following its closure.

He said: “I am very happy for the reopening of the Woodman’s Arms Pub.

“My gratitude extends to the community for their unwavering support of this beloved establishment and to the brewery for maintaining its commitment.

“The absence of the pub was deeply felt within our community, and I am looking forward to its much-anticipated comeback.”

The Woodman’s Arms pub has been welcoming guests since 1874, according to its website.

Star Pubs has insisted it was committed to reopening the pub as quickly as possible and announced last month that it would be re-opening in early spring under a temporary operator.

A Star Pubs spokesman said: “We’re pleased to say the Woodman’s Arms in Benfleet will reopen this weekend with a new operator at the helm who is looking forward to opening the doors of this much-loved pub and welcoming the community back.”

The previous landlord announced on Facebook that they would be leaving the pub, after operating it since March 2020, stating only that it was “time to move on to pastures new”.