The Horse & Jockey, at Tylers Green, revamp has been completed by Heineken-owned Star and licensee Alex van Someren and the historic pub is now a “great-quality traditional village local” that has introduced “affordable pub grub”.
External work has included painting it pale grey and installing new lighting, signage and planting plus there is new seating for 50 at the front and an enclosed 50-seater garden with new decking and lantern lighting at the rear.
Classic aspects retained
Inside, the new décor uses heritage colours on the walls as well as new upholstery, carpets and lighting that complement the building’s age. The pub’s distinctive horseshoe-shaped bar, cosy nooks, old beams and open fire have all been retained along with its collection of horse brasses.
A kitchen refit means pub favourites at lunchtimes and evenings will keep customers well fed and van Someren insists the Horse & Jockey is “not becoming a restaurant” and will remain an old-fashioned local.
State-of-the-art dispense equipment for the cellar has also been installed with the site seeking Cask Marque accreditation for the pub’s cask ales.
The reopening marks van Someren’s first anniversary as licensee of the pub. She said: “The Horse & Jockey had only been open intermittently over the previous four years and a number of its customers had moved to the Squirrel (her former pub).”
Busiest it’s ever been
She continued: “When they heard I was looking for a new pub, they asked me to take over the Horse & Jockey. It was shut at the time, and they were fearful for its future. They even banded together and helped clean the pub and tidy the garden.
“People tell me the Horse & Jockey is the busiest it has been in 40 years. It’s fantastic to be able to thank everyone for their backing with this refurbishment.”
Star Pubs & Bars area manager Andrew Downie added: “Alex has put her all into the Horse & Jockey over the past 12 months, focusing on what the community wants and bringing in a quiz, darts and live music. It’s no surprise people who hadn’t been in for years, in addition to a host of new customers, have become regulars.”