‘You have a lit­tle dream and some­times it works’

Lor­can Lovett talks to another of the pubs nom­i­nated for our 2015 Pub of the Year contest

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - LIFE & LEISURE -

ACOU­PLE who saved a pub odmisirneg­panier­war e pun­ters, chil­dren and even dogs to en­joy the new look. The inside of The Black Cat in Lye Green, near Che­sham, was a mess when Louis and Elaine Smith pur­chased it eight years ago, and the gar­den was so ne­glected they found a ta­ble and chairs hid­den by the long grass.

Now the pub­li­cans wel­come cus­tomers new and old to try the food and drink at the ren­o­vated free house which boasts a gar­den of over 300 fee with a wood­land walk for chil­dren.

Mrs Smith said: “The pub was com­pletely run down when we ar­rived, it was semi-shut.

“Hope­fully we have com­pletely turned it all around. It means more per­son­ally when you know what it wa be­fore to what it is now. You have a lit­tle dream and some­times it works.”

The pub made its first en­try into Good Beer Guide in 2010 and pun­ters en­joy Macmil­lan cof­fee morn­ings, quiz and band nights, and, as the name sug­gests, big Hal­loween par­ties.

“It is like a com­mu­nity pub rather than any­thing else,” said Mrs Smith. “If peo­ple come up with an idea which we can help with, then we do help.

“And the cus­tomers here make the place wel­com­ing. We have nice reg­u­lars who will talk to any­body.”

Ex­pect to see a cat called Rambo stalk­ing the pub and gar­den as well as Lake­land ter­rier Grip sit­ting in a cor­ner. How­ever dogs are not al­lowed in the bar at meal times.

The bar has an ar­ray of award­win­ning ales and all of the food is cooked by land­lord Mr Smith. Mrs Smith is re­search­ing the his­tory of the pub which can be traced back to 1828. Since then it has been the venue for church meet­ings, vil­lage shops and a hair­dressers in the back shed.

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