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The Riverboat

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The riverboat

1990: The Riverboat's plastic image gives Alec and Bet cause to fear what the brewery has in store for the Rovers

The Riverboat was a Newton & Ridley theme pub located in Handover Street, Pendlebury. In 1990, when the brewery was planning refurbishments to the Rovers Return, Bet and Alec Gilroy paid a visit to the Riverboat at the suggestion of Nigel Ridley to get an idea what to expect from the new-look Rovers.

Knowing the Riverboat in its previous incarnation as the Dog and Bottle, described by Bet as a "right old dump", the Gilroys were impressed as they entered the bar from the banks of the River Irwell, the outside living up to Nigel's description of it being a showcase for the brewery. They were equally awed by the public bar; the entire pub had been done over in a southern states USA theme, littered with American and Confederate flags, slot machines, with staff dressed as cowboys and showgirls, and containing areas such as the Mississippi dining deck and the Wyatt Earp gaming saloon. The menu had was been done over, with their famously bad meat pies replaced by southern fried chicken and pastrami.

The pub's false image turned Bet against the idea of changing the Rovers, with her later remarking to Betty Turpin that it was a glorified youth club with a manager who didn't look old enough to drink. Though wary himself, Alec was dazzled by the prospect of the Rovers commanding such a young, wealthy clientele and gave Nigel Ridley his vote of approval.

The pub scenes were shot on location in Episode 3068 (11th May 1990).

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