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Rushall's Half Moon Inn recognised for fighting local loneliness




Norfolk County Councillor Beverley Spratt, Sarah Campbell-Jones and Ray Paul. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography. (3396414)
Norfolk County Councillor Beverley Spratt, Sarah Campbell-Jones and Ray Paul. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography. (3396414)

Within a year of reopening, the Half Moon Inn has become the centre of village life – gaining a quality mark in the process.

The Rushall pub, restaurant and shop received the quality mark from Norfolk County Council.

The award is part of the county council's In Good Company campaign, which recognises organisations which help tackle loneliness in the county.

"A pub isn't just a pub anymore," said Sarah Campbell-Jones, who owns the pub with husband Ray Paul.

"It is a diverse place which needs to be open to what people want.

"There are a lot of very lonely people nearby, some who have relatives living far away, so we try to organise events to give them a chance to socialise.

"It's a real bonus to us as a pub to be there for people."

The Half Moon was reopened by the couple in November.

During the Beast from the East, a cold wave of weather which hit in February, the inn offered provisions, help and hot food to people.

In May, it also opened a village shop and play area on the site – and Ms Campbell-Jones is determined to keep going with the pub's proactive approach to the community.

"We are always open to ideas," said Ms Campbell-Jones, who was surprised at receiving the quality mark. "We're setting up a monthly tea and cake get together, so people can meet and chat.

"We have also secured a defibrillator, which will soon be mounted on the side of the inn, with more than 50 people already signing up for training to use it."

The county council's quality marks have been given to more than 40 recipients since being introduced in the autumn of last year.

The pub is one of 15 to receive one of this year's awards.



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