New owners ‘excited’ to reopen 150-year-old village pub
- Credit: JO MATTHEWS
The new owners of The Swan at Holbrook say they are “excited” to reopen the pub after it closed more than seven months ago.
Jo Matthews and Adam Climie have moved from Colchester to the peninsula pub in the heart of Holbrook to take on an exciting new venture.
The couple, who have been together for more than 16 years, said they have always dreamt of running their own pub and are now taking the plunge.
Ms Matthews said it is “what they have always wanted” and they are looking forward to bringing the popular pub back to the village.
“We previously ran a pub for 18 months and that cemented our decision that we wanted to have our own,” said the 49-year-old.
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“We have been looking for a very long time and have done a concentrated search in the last two years. We chose The Swan as it has a nice warm environment for drinkers and it is somewhere we and our friends would love to come.”
The Swan had previously been owned by Calvors Brewery since 2018, who closed its doors for good at the beginning of lockdown in March, and put it up for sale.
MORE: The Rampant Horse closes after coronavirus makes it ‘unviable’ – with fears more could followHolbrook Parish Council ensured the building would continue to be used as a pub and it was listed as an Asset of Community Value, which meant parishioners would have had the opportunity to buy it rather than see it being developed into houses.
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Ms Matthews and Mr Climie said that taking over the pub is “slightly daunting, but very exciting”.
“We have moved from our home into a new village and our lives has completely changed,” said Ms Matthews.
Mr Climie, who is also 49, previously worked as a telecoms engineer, while Ms Matthews worked in admin for a recruitment agency.
They moved into the premises in The Street last month and have since been concentrating on cleaning the building and getting the cellar ready.
“We are making sure that when we can open we are ready,” said Ms Matthews.
“We have had a lovely welcome so far and have met a few of the locals, who have all been very friendly,” she said.
Originally the pair had hoped to open in early December, but with the lockdown restrictions the opening will be pushed back.
At first the pub will be entirely drinks-led and they will be looking into a food offering next year. The pub will also be completely Covid compliant and safe when they are able to open.