Village boosted by pub power

A MASSIVE pub expansion has provided a welcome boost to the local economy - as well as improving electricity supply for an entire Suffolk village. Bosses at the award-winning pub, The Crown in Stoke by Nayland, have spoken of their delight after the finishing touches were put to a £1million revamp and upgrade.

A MASSIVE pub expansion has provided a welcome boost to the local economy - as well as improving electricity supply for an entire Suffolk village.

Bosses at the award-winning pub, The Crown in Stoke by Nayland, have spoken of their delight after the finishing touches were put to a £1million revamp and upgrade.

As well as using local traders from Suffolk and Essex, the pub now employs more than 65 staff thanks to the scheme, which involved building 11 new guest rooms to create a “boutique hotel”.

And any problems caused surging demand for electricity from the new venture were overcome when the pub spent more than £20,000 on an on-site sub station to power the business and the rest of the village.

Managing director Richard Sunderland explained: “There have always been problems with electricity in the village and we were told by EDF Energy that there wasn't enough power to sustain the hotel part of the pub.

“We wanted to give something back and we were more than happy to pay more than £20,000 to upgrade the electrical supply to the whole village as part of the project.”

Most Read

Mr Sunderland praised the part the local community has had in the pub's success and admitted going to great lengths to ensure disruption was kept to a minimum during building work.

He said: “We were able to hire a strip of land from a local farmer so our machinery could bypass the village and gain access to the site from another entrance. There has been some upheaval but the village seems pleased with what we are doing.”

The new overnight accommodation at the independent country pub was partly built to answer a call from people in south Essex and London heading to Suffolk for weekend breaks.

The year-long project called upon local traders and suppliers from Sudbury, Hadleigh, Colchester and Dedham and the work has boosted the businesses workforce to more than 65 staff.

The rooms will be officially unveiled tonight, when guests from business, hospitality and trade will gather for a special opening night.

Although not available until Monday, Mr Sunderland said he had received bookings for as far ahead as Christmas 2009.