Large old Newcastle pub
with an historical interest that has recently
been transformed into another typical Bigg Market
bar. The pub is on the site
of the Wheatsheaf pub & music room which dates back
to 1862. It was previously named after the licensee John Balmbra and has been famous for its music hall for
over 100 years. The song "The Blaydon Races" was
first performed here by George Ridley.
Reflex bar has been moved from its former position
at the top of the Bigg Market area into this famous
old establishment. The old style has been ripped out
and replaced with just another weekend drinking bar.
It is a shame given its cultural interest and I feel
the new look does nothing to keep the memory old Balmbras apart from the futile attempt to retain the
name. The new bar has two large bars at the front
and rear with limited seating throughout.
bar is small with some lounge seating at one
side and all the psychedelic lights, flashing
screens and fixtures of the eighties. The large
rubik cube lights are an indication of what you are
about to experience. The DJ is situated at the one
end of the bar and there is also several TV's on
show. The rear bar is very large and is usually only
open at the weekend. Very loud eighties music is on play at
most times. The bar has a lively atmosphere at weekends
but only from about 8pm onwards. On a Friday &
Saturday free entry before 10pm with Club Tropicana.
Disabled access very good
to main bar with a special designated disabled
toilet to the side of the pub. Toilets are small and
Check out the bars own website at