The much-loved pub on Lawe Road reopened on Thursday, September 12 after being taken over by the former landlords of the Rose and Crown at Holborn.
Regulars from both the Harbour Lights and The Rose and Crown packed out the pub, which is owned by Heineken's Star Pubs and Bars outfit, on its first night since it closed in January 2019.
New landlords Chris and Karen McKellar look set to restore the Victorian-era pub to its former glory as a mainstay on the South Shields pub scene.
“It was overwhelming how many people showed up, the locals from up here and people from the Rosie,” said Chris.
“It was so busy we had to call in an extra member of staff.”
He continued: “It’s been a really good response, even this morning we’ve had a few people come in saying they had a really good night so that’s been nice.
“I think it’s the talk of the town at the moment, which is fantastic and we hope it continues.”
Although the kitchen is not quite ready to start serving, decorators have given the bar a spruce up and the couple have plans to install some of the Rose and Crown’s famous seafaring memorabilia over the coming weeks.
“We’ll get the memorabilia up over the next couple of weeks for everyone to see and enjoy,” said Chris.
The couple are now looking forward to the weekend with live music from Jonny Boyle on Saturday.
They are keen to get to know the locals and give them a say on the future of the pub.
“The welcome we have had from everyone has been fantastic, it’s feeling very homely very quickly,” Chris added.
“We’re looking to get the locals in to talk to them and see what they want - at the end of the day it's their pub.
“We’re really looking forward to seeing what happens.”
The Harbour Lights will be open from 11am-midnight over the weekend and is dog friendly.