The Railway in Hinckley, which is owned by Leicester-based company Steamin’ Billy, has joined forces with an allotment society to provide local and fresh ingredients for their meals in exchange for beer.
Manager of the pub Adam Crump said: “Growers bring down their goods in the morning then the chef works out a fair price for it and we give them the equivalent in beer.”
Though it is early days for the scheme, Crump estimated that trade has already increased due to the traditional concept.
He said: “Many of the allotment society were new members this year so we have about two dozen new people I think but it could become endless.”
“The people who have grown the ingredients will often come in and eat with us. For example, the man who grows the rhubarb has become a real regular now.”
The barter system has also provided a twist to the pub’s usual food offering. Crump added: “It has enabled us to put some different things on our menu that are grown locally such as rhubarb crumble and apple pies.”
Crump explained while trade is on the up, there are other important aspects to the scheme: “For us, it isn’t about profit but about being a team, building bridges with parts of the community and bringing people together.”
He concluded: “It is a proper British pub with proper British people and this is a proper British idea for a community pub.”