Former player to tackle bars

Ex-Edinburgh star Crombie purchases pub on Leith Walk

Woodland Creatures is said to be designed in a “very eclectic and individual” style

A FORMER Edinburgh Rugby player has swapped scrums for rums after taking his first steps into the city’s licensed trade.

Sean Crombie, who also played for Newcastle Falcons and Dubai-side Jebel Ali Dragons, purchased the Woodland Creatures bar, which occupies the ground floor of a Victorian-style tenement on Edinburgh’s Leith Walk.

The venue, which has previously traded as The Balfour Bar, can accommodate around 80 covers via separate public and lounge bar areas; there is also a fully fitted commercial kitchen.

Both bars are described as being fitted out and designed to a “very eclectic and individual standard”.

Externally, the business has a beer garden, which is said to be accessed via a “quirky” exit in the lounge bar.

Barry McNeil, director of selling  agent Cornerstone, who handled the sale, saluted the strength of the market in the area surrounding one of the capital’s best-known streets.

He said: “Leith, and the Leith Walk area in particular, have become very popular locations for licensed businesses in the last 18 months or so.

“The continued development of Edinburgh city centre, especially the St. James’ Quarter, has opened up Leith Walk and Leith as a desirable trading location for bars and restaurants.

“Leith Walk specifically has undergone major redevelopment with new hotels, as well as student housing and further developments planned enabling bar, restaurant and coffee shop owners to appeal to a wider variety of clientele.”

The freehold property and business had been on the market for a guide price of £380,000. The final sale price was not disclosed.