‘We’re after the icing on the cake...’
Camilla Goodman talks to the landlady of another of the pubs nominated in our great Pub of the Year competition
NHISTORIC pub which has been wetting people’s whistle since the 19th century is still going strong thanks to its current crop of customers. The Gamekeeper’s Lodge has been in Bellingdon Road, Chesham, since 1859 and had a licence since 1889.
Pat Miller has worked at the pub for 15 and a half years and, in September 2013, her dream came true when she and her husband, Steve, became the pub’s tenants.
Mrs Miller said: “The last year has been great; it’s been lovely being our own bosses but it’s been even better being able to do things when we want, such as entertainment. It’s been lovely and my locals have been absolutely fantastic. If it wasn’t for them we wouldn’t be here. It’s the customers that make the pub and create the atmosphere.”
The Millers have overseen a few changes to the pub in the last year, including some in May which was paid for by Punch Taverns, which owns the pub.
Work included improvements to the kitchen, the restaurant, the toilets and the exterior.
Mrs Miller added: “It’s improved the pub immensely and I’d like to think it’s more welcoming now. Punch also invested in the pub which is absolutely fantastic.”
In October, following the closure of Vietnamese restaurant Feu Mac which was attached to the pub, the Millers opened their own restaurant simply called The Restaurant.
The Restaurant serves traditional English food and is open for lunch Tuesday to Saturday 12pm to 2.30pm, evening meals Monday to Saturday 6pm to 10pm and Sundays for roast dinners and its main menu 12pm to 8pm.
Mrs Miller said: “It’s been a great success and I’d urge people to come along and try our reasonably priced food.”
The pub also hosts an open mic night every Sunday as well as regular live music on Friday and Saturday evenings.
Mrs Miller is urging people to vote for The Gamekeeper’s Lodge.
She added: “It’d be absolutely wonderful to win. We got the Silver award in Chesham in Bloom and won the Chesham Carnival shield this year so this would be the icing on the cake.”