A MUCH-LOVED pub-turned-B&B in Wivenhoe has been 'forced to close' after its owners had "different visions" for the future. 

The Flag, in Colchester Road, Wivenhoe, shut down immediately earlier this week to the shock of punters. 

The 18th-century-old pub has had a rocky history with closures, reopenings and even a time where it was feared the pub would be demolished.

Closing - The FlagClosing - The Flag (Image: Newsquest)

It reopened in 2022 after a £1,000,000 refurbishment by owners Adel Salah and William Grinsted who took over.

In a Facebook post the pubs said closing the business down was not an easy decision.

It said: "It is with a heavy heart that we announce the closure of The Flag Wivenhoe, effective immediately."

When asked by the Gazette, the pub said in a statement: "After much deliberation and consideration, the decision to close our doors has been made following the dissolution of the business partnership between William Grinsted and Adel Salah.

"The decision to close was not made lightly. Both Mr Grinsted and Mr Salah have different visions for the future.

"Despite numerous efforts to find a resolution, they have been unable to reconcile their differences.

"The staff have been deeply committed to the business, making this outcome even more difficult, but the dispute has created an environment where continuing operations is no longer feasible.

"Since opening, The Flag has become a beloved part of the community, known for its exceptional dining experience and commitment to quality.

"The success we've enjoyed is a testament to the loyalty of our patrons, for which we are profoundly grateful and the dedication of the amazing team, all of whom will be supported during this transition.

"As we close this chapter, we look forward to new beginnings and future ventures."

Owner - William Grinsted on the B&B's opening nightOwner - William Grinsted on the B&B's opening night (Image: Steve Brading)

Bosses of the eatery passed on their gratitude to the multitude of customers and employees who have been involved with The Flag. 

It read: "To our valued customers, thank you for allowing us to serve you.

"We apologise for any inconvenience this closure may cause and appreciate your understanding during this time.  

"To the dedicated team who have made this journey unforgettable - your support has meant the world, thank you so much for all you have done.  

"As we close this chapter, we look forward to new beginnings and we hope you will join us in supporting our future ventures."