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Tampa restaurant puts accent on British specialties

Pokey's takes over the former Loading Dock in downtown Tampa, adding a British twist with dishes like fish and chips. Photo courtesy of Mark Pocock.

Pokey's takes over the former Loading Dock in downtown Tampa, adding a British twist with dishes like fish and chips. Photo courtesy of Mark Pocock.

TAMPA — In September, Mark Pocock and his wife, Rachael, traveled from their home in England to see Van Halen perform at Tampa's MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre.

For breakfast, they dropped into the Loading Dock in downtown Tampa.

"We found out that the owner was selling it and we loved the way the building looked," Pocock said. "So, we decided to move here. We liked the weather and wanted a change."

On May 19, after a heavy-duty cleaning, adding some speakers and new lighting, Pokey's opened at 100 E Madison St., serving breakfast, lunch and dinner.

"My background is insurance and I'm still working in the insurance industry here" Pocock said. "That's my day job and helping in the restaurant is my night job. My wife, who did event management, is here all the time. People like to come in just to hear her accent."

Like the English accent, the pub also serves British specialties. Wednesdays are dedicated to traditional English dishes that change weekly.

Every night is a new event.

On Mondays they bring in a video DJ. Tuesdays are for trivia, followed by a comedy show.

Thursdays they roll out a special burger menu and on Fridays and Saturdays there are local bands and DJs.

"We are working with Hills­borough Performing Arts to bring in local bands in a variety of genres. We just want to give people the opportunity to play," Pocock said.

Once fall comes around, Sundays will be sports all day.

Also planned for the future is transforming the back alley into a beer garden for outdoor drinking.

They are following in the Loading Dock's footsteps by offering catering as well.

A grand opening around the time of their three-month anniversary is in the works.

For more information and to see the menu visit, or call (813) 223-6905.

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Tampa restaurant puts accent on British specialties 07/20/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 20, 2016 5:32pm]
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