ACOUPLE have made their village com pmubunthitey cweinthtre of traditional food and events. The Jolly Cricketers was taken over by Amanda Baker and Chris Lillitou i March 2008.
“We were both in the village,” said Amanda. “It was all new to us but we wanted the challenge. “It’s been a journey for us.” It is a journey that has gone well fo the pair, as the pub has won award af award.
It won the Publican Newcomer award in 2010, and has been rewarded for its food and service and named as the best pub.
Amanda thinks this is due to their commitment to having a local pub at the heart of the community and trying to excel in all areas.
“We wanted the best food, the best staff and music. We even have a proper darts team. We wanted to offer everybody something.
“We are busy throughout the day, but we have the mums for a coffee earlier on, then the pub regulars later for food or drink, then the clubs or those that like music later.”
The pub has morris dancing, a darts team, board games and live music just to name a few events.
Amanda feels it has become ‘a real British pub’ showcasing the best local things.
“We were novices but it shows what you can do. We listen to people and what they want which is why I think we have done well and people come back.”
This does not mean that the pub always gets it right the first time.
“We moved our music to Sunday afternoon after people said they would prefer that. We also had more fine dining food, but people seem to prefer our traditional English food now. Chris listened with the ales, and we will often go to events to find the best brewers and ales.”
The pub constantly changes what it offers, giving people different tastes of ales and beers.
“I think people realised we had this vision and they bought into it. We love it. I think people think of this as a place to meet. If their car is having an MOT down the road, or before picking up the children, a quick catch up or business meeting, we see everything.”
Amanda Baker and Chris Lilitou of the awardwinning Jolly Cricketers