The Temple Inn, in Liss Forest, Hampshire, had been closed since January 2017 after pubco Fuller’s put it up for sale when its previous tenants left at the end of their contract.
The pub was redeveloped under the Red Mist Leisure group of Hampshire and Surrey pubs and is the 10th pub to be added to its portfolio.
The acquisition by Mark Robson and Mark Williams came after Red Mist was contacted by pub task force Save Our Temple Inn (SOTI), formed through the local residents' association.
Closure of the hamlet’s only pub caused residents in SOTI to lament the loss of the establishment to the local council through a Change.org petition, with villagers describing the pub as “central to communal life”.
Now, £300,000 worth of refurbishments have breathed new life into the Temple Inn, which has a history tracing back to 1870.
Pub manager Nat Thatcher said the pub’s new chapter was a chance to welcome old and new punters.
He said: “This is the start of a new era for the Temple Inn and we hope the locals of Liss Forest and the surrounding area, who were keen to save their pub, are proud of what we have all achieved together.
“We’re delighted to be open and look forward to welcoming our customers, both old and new.”
Contemporary and traditional elements have been combined to make visitors feel at home, with a rustic log burner surrounded by wooden tables and modern booth seats.
A new kitchen has also been installed in order for head chef Dale Harris to deliver a seasonal menu of pub classics. Harris will serve classic dishes including Red Mist Ale battered haddock; home-made chicken, ham and leek pie; and John Ross whisky-cured smoked salmon.
The inn prides itself on using suppliers from within the county and the south-east when possible and will champion local produce.
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