By Will Bradley
South Newton’s Bell Inn has rung in the changes and been completely refurbished.
New owners David and Nicky are welcoming back visitors to the 300-year-old rural pub on the A36 not far from Wilton.
The couple took over the premises in July last year and have made wholesale changes to bring the pub into the 21st century.
“The pub was very tired before we took over,” David explained to Valley News.
After a month-long closure, the pub re-opened with a refurbished bar, restaurant and toilets with a new disabled toilet and baby changing facilities.
The pub also has five fully-renovated letting rooms, one with disabled access and new bathrooms.
“We are still a village pub. We hope the pub will remain wet-led, as we begin to expand the food side of the business,” David explained.
“We are not transforming the pub into an ultra-modern gastro-pub, we respect its history,” Nicky confirmed.
“The majority of locals have been very supportive. We have four darts team regularly using the pub,” David added.
David and Nicky believe it could take up to two years to establish the pub as a rural hub for locals and visitors, and more changes are planned on-site. They believe it can be difficult to attract people to use their local pub due to cheap alcohol on sale at supermarkets.
“We are looking at putting on live music on selected Saturday nights and hosting quiz nights. We also have food and drink themed nights, including Spice Night on Wednesday, Fish and Chips on Friday and Super Steak Saturdays with two steaks and a bottle of wine for £20. Take away is also available.
“Sunday lunch is a choice of traditional roasts and is already very popular, booking is strongly recommended,” David added.
The bar and restaurant can seat up to 60 people and specialises in traditional home-made food. The pub has ample parking, two beer gardens, and is dog and child friendly.
“All food is cooked to order. We also have an emphasis on gluten-free and lactose/dairy-free food,” he added.
The pub also has a specials board, a range of gluten and dairy free puddings and a large vegetarian menu. The free house also regularly changes real ales and other alcoholic drinks.
“We are here to stay for the long-term. We want to establish the pub on an equal footing for the community,” David explained.
En-suite room rates start at £39 for a single room, and £49 for a double room and the pub is currently looking to recruit a housekeeper and cleaner.
To book a table phone 01722 743336 or for more information: www.thebellinn1737.co.uk