Licensees celebrate 43 years behind the bar

By Amelie Maurice-Jones contact

- Last updated on GMT

Here's to many more years: Operators celebrate 43 years at Kent-based pub the Anchor
Here's to many more years: Operators celebrate 43 years at Kent-based pub the Anchor

Related tags: Gastropub, Admiral taverns, Kent

Licensees of the Anchor in Sevenoaks, Kent, have celebrated their 43rd anniversary behind the bar as they opt to sign another 10-year contract with pubco Admiral Taverns.

Barry Dennis and Philip Wheeler took over the Anchor in 1979, and have signed their new agreement with Admiral Taverns managing director Ian Ronayne and business development manager Paul Gornall on-site.

The pair started their journey in hospitality in the mid-1970s, and have both owned pubs including the St Christopher Inn – formerly the Prince of Orange – in Greenwich.

Raising a glass to the future

For Dennis, the last 43 years at the Anchor had been “fantastic”. He said: “Both Phil and I are so grateful to our incredible team, the local community, and of course to Admiral Taverns for all their support. A lot has changed since 1979, but we love it here in Sevenoaks and are looking forward to the next 10 years.”  

The two operators have spent the last 43 years creating a social hub for the community and have made sure to support local businesses. The pub is renowned for its regular events including hosting food trucks and beer tasting evenings.

Wheeler added: “Time really does fly when you’re having fun! We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved at the Anchor and hope we can continue to serve the residents of Sevenoaks for many more years to come.” 

Celebrating longevity

The Anchor hosts a selection of draught lager, real ale, wines and spirts as well as a small food menu that includes traditional pub favourites such as homemade pies, burgers and roasts.

Dennis and Wheeler are not the first to celebrate decades behind the bar this year. Pub managers for Stonegate, Sheila Khagan and Vicki Phillips of the Sack of Potatoes, Birmingham, celebrated 30 years of service in the sector,​ and operator of Leicestershire-based pub the Chequers, Brian Priest, reached 35 years at the pub in January.

The owner of the pub in Swinford told The Morning Advertiser:​ “You’ve always got somebody to talk to, or to listen to, or something going on.

“You see life from various different angles; you see marriages, deaths, you see all sorts, if offers a varied outlook on life.”

Related topics: Other operators

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