The new tenants of a closed north Suffolk pub will be hoping for the luck of the Irish when they reopen for the first time in a year next week.
Darren and Angela Turner, originally from Yorkshire, have taken the reins of The Swan Inn, Hoxne, and will officially reopen the pub on Thursday, March 17, at 6pm – St Patrick’s Day.
There will be a free hog roast, Irish music, the chance for people to sing songs in a portable studio and more.
It will be the couple’s first taste of the pub industry. Moving from their home in Eye with twins Ben and Beth, nine, Mr Turner worked his way from packer driver to operations director at Smiths News, while Mrs Turner will continue her role as a practice nurse part time.
Mr Turner said that after being made redundant in September, the family had invested ‘substantial’ funds to improve the interior of the pub and they had plans for the exterior.
“It is scary but exciting,” said Mr Turner.
“It is criminal really that is has been closed, because it is such a beautiful pub. The community around here and surrounding area love it, it has something about it.”
The couple say the pub will be dog and child friendly, offer classic food and cask ale, and say it is a case of ‘listening to what the people want’.
They hope to host music events, theatrical performances and meetings in the future and a suggestion box will be in the pub.
The pub, owned by Enterprise Inns, was built in 1480. And it was a visit by the couple to the pub as they searched for a property in East Anglia four years ago which initially planted the seed that one day they could be pulling pints behind the bar at The Swan.
“We were looking at a house in Hoxne and we asked the people ‘is there a nice pub round here?’, said Mr Turner.
“Me and Angela sat downstairs in the pub four-and-a-half years ago, looked at each other and said ‘it would be nice to have something like this’.
“I didn’t want to go back into corporate life, I’ve worked away from Angela and the twins a lot and I thought let’s do something as a family.
“We know it is going to be hard, we know it is going to be long hours, but we want the doors to open on March 17 and never close again.
“We feel so lucky and honoured to be in a great community, in a great village and area, and we love it down here.”
For more, see The Swan Inn Facebook page or call 01379 668275
n The pub will be holding a jobs fair on Saturday for those interested working at The Swan Inn.
It will run from 9am to 2pm and people can just drop in.