A Watford pub that was left boarded up for months is set for a refurbished reopening “pre-Christmas”.

In April this year, locals were sad to see Fearnley Street’s The Oddfellows shut down, with its entrance and windows covered up at short notice.

A refurbishment had already been planned to get underway once a new long-term manager was found, but it shut down when the temporary licensee looking after the pub during the recruitment process left.

It appeared that progress had been made in September, when a planning application to update the signs was submitted, before scaffolding was spotted by passers-by this month.

Today (November 15), Star Pubs and Bars was finally able to confirm to the Watford Observer that a new manager has been found.

A spokesperson for the Heineken subsidiary said: “We're pleased to say The Oddfellows, Watford is due to reopen pre-Christmas after undergoing an extensive refurbishment.

Watford Observer: The Oddfellows exterior CGI.The Oddfellows exterior CGI. (Image: Stars Pubs & Bars)

“The new manager and his staff look forward to welcoming back customers to the revamped pub which offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere, excellent food and drinks and a new outside seating area.”

The pub will be run as a joint business venture between the operator, who will be self-employed and responsible for the day-to-day running of the business, and Star Pubs and Bars.

Refurbishment works had been set to make The Oddfellows a “friendly and modern pub” which was originally to include renaming it.

Watford Observer: Oddfellows refurbishment floorplanOddfellows refurbishment floorplan (Image: Stars Pubs and Bars)

It was later confirmed, in October last year, that the name change to The Hornets will not go ahead.

This may have been due to criticism that the name would be confusing for a pub near Vicarage Road but often patronised by away fans.

Exterior changes submitted in the recent planning application included a large sign on the side with a new logo, window vinyls with the pub name, new illuminated lettering, and several smaller signs across the front of the boozer.

Other planned works include an outdoor seating area in the beer garden with a retractable roof, an outdoor soft play area, kitchen facilities, and an open bar floor.

Watford Observer: The Oddfellows in April.The Oddfellows in April. (Image: John Davies)