An Oxfordshire pub where superstar George Michael used to eat every week and even had his own table should reopen soon.

The singer lived in Goring for 17 years and was sadly found dead at his riverside home on Christmas Day 2016.

Mary Galer, who used to run the Miller of Mansfield pub in the village, remembers him as a neighbour and a friend.

"Well, friend might be a bit strong," she joked. 

The 'Faith' singer and former frontman of the band Wham! was treated just like the other locals at the pub.

Oxford Mail:

"He had a certain table that he wanted every week, and we saw him right up until his passing," Mrs Galer said.

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"I think we felt a little bit protective of him, in the sense that he shouldn't be disturbed and left to it like anybody else".

The pub was just across the road from his 16th Century home where villagers queued to pay their respects after he died.

After his death George was unveiled as the secret donor who helped save an Oxfordshire beauty spot when he anonymously ploughed £10,000 into a hard-fought campaign to save Thrupp Lake in Radley, after RWE npower won permission to dump ash in the water.

His ‘vital’ contribution to the successful Save Radley Lakes crusade came to light eight years after he died.

Ms Galer said the people of Goring wanted a quiet existence just as much as their pop star resident did.

A picture emerged of the singer, drinking an espresso Martini, and a male companion laughing while looking at a mobile phone together in the pub months before his death.

Oxford Mail:

"It was his sanctuary," she said. "He lived here for a reason. We all understood he wanted to be out of the limelight and to live his life how he wanted to live it.

"He was a very loyal patron, one that was lovely to have - but as far as we were concerned he was a normal customer."

Mary and her husband Nick sadly left the pub in January after the cost of the lease renewal went up almost 90 per cent.

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The couple ran the pub for eight years despite facing the challenges of a fire and facing very worrying times during Covid.

Stonegate will be taking over the running of The Miller and will reopen for bookings soon.

Fans still visit Goring from all over the world.

Mrs Galer said: "They want to know where he sat, what he drank, what he was like to meet.

"There was no air about him that would make you feel like he was different. He was just like anybody else," the landlady said.