Historic pub reopens

VILLAGERS are thrilled that a pub that had been at the heart of Debenham since 1550 before its sudden closure has been saved.

VILLAGERS are thrilled that a pub that had been at the heart of Debenham since 1550 before its sudden closure has been saved.

A couple who worked on the remote and picturesque Isles of Scilly almost 30 miles off Lands End as a chef and barmaid, and starred on the BBC's popular series An Island Parish which followed the life of islanders, have taken over as the landlords of The Angel Inn.

The tavern, which had won awards for its food and is owned by Enterprise Inns, closed suddenly without explanation for four months, before it reopened with new the landlords within the last few weeks

Now Thea Charrot-Hickling, 26, and her partner Paul Websdale, 24, aim to put the Grade II listed beamed inn which has open fireplaces back at the heart of the community.

The couple are offering home cooked food with local ingredients, buying fish from Lowestoft, meat from a butcher at nearby Eye, vegetables from local greengrocers and flowers for the restaurant from a local florist's.

Mr Websdale said: “We love the British pub, and it is such a shame so many are closing. It's a risky business, but we love it.”

Most Read

Miss Charrot-Hickling said: “This is very much a traditional village inn with real ales, a good selection of wine and soft drinks, good home cooked food using local products, free range eggs and organic produce.

“We would not want to do anything else and are not worried about the credit crunch. There is always a risk in life but as long as we have high standards, work hard and people are supportive and keep coming to save the pub, that's all that matters.”

The couple have worked in hotels, pubs and restaurants for years and are backing the Evening Star's campaign to see pubs open.

Joan Bedford-Lane, who has lived in Debenham for years and raises funds for local organisations, said: “You have got to keep these services open and I am delighted to see the pub open again.

“People want to see their shops and businesses open, the last thing we want to see is out services disappearing.”