One of Wharfedale’s most prominently positioned pubs will re-open on Thursday, February 27, after a lengthy closure.

Positioned on top of Otley Chevin, The Royalty is reckoned to be the highest licensed house in the Leeds metropolitan area.

A long popular destination for both hillwalkers and those driving up to Surprise View, the Yorkgate inn – which has been serving beer since at least 1915 – has been closed for the past two and a half years.

Otley Pub Club became so worried for its future that last November it issued a public plea to the owners to sell it on so it could be run locally.

But now the Mornington Pub Company, a small national chain, has stepped in and given the property a major revamp.

The public will get their first chance to see the results when new licensees Steve Nolson and Bea Majors open their doors next Thursday.

The pub was due to re-open tomorrow night but due to recent bad weather, the date had to be pushed back.

Mornington’s national operations manager, Paul Hirst, said: “Steve and Bea will be the new managers of the Royalty and it was important that they are local people who know the area very well.

“We believe we will create up to 15 new full and part-time local jobs.”

The pub, which has a stone-floored public bar with a wood-burning stove, will serve food from noon to 10pm all week and boasts a conservatory that overlooks the runway at Leeds-Bradford Airport and offers panoramic views.

Serving cask ales and a selection of wines, the bar also has free Wi-Fi for customers.

President of Otley Pub Club, MP Greg Mulholland (Lib Dem, Leeds North West), said: “It is good news and a great relief that at last the iconic Royalty will be opening its doors again and serving walkers and other visitors to the Chevin, as well as locals. I wish Mornington Pub Company and Steve and Bea the best of luck, hope to see them make a success of this famous pub, and look forward to enjoying their hospitality and once again enjoying the wonderful views.”

The Royalty, along with one other soon-to-be-opened new venue, takes Mornington’s stable of pubs up to eight.

Heartening to see Otley Chevin pub buck the trend