If you followed the link on Facebook (and if you didn’t) — welcome to The Coach’s new Web site! This post follows on from my note there but I hope it may be of interest, wherever you came from, and is mostly a note for anybody who might have been wondering what’s going on at The Coach.
When we arrived, we started off with quite a list of tasks to complete – many of them not to do with anything structural or even decorative, at the pub. This was partly because, as you may know, we weren’t able to acquire the entire former premises, including the car park and store, because the previous owner had obtained planning permission to build a house on that part of the property and was selling it off separately. I don’t want to pretend we couldn’t just have opened the pub pretty-much as it was, in normal times, although it would have been a bit of a stretch. And in the abnormal times of our arrival, there was literally no handover so we’ve been gradually working out some of the puzzles the building has to offer!
Given the circumstances we’re in, we are taking the opportunity to upgrade the kitchen and get a few other important issues resolved that will be beneficial further down the line.After we got here, our job list quickly expanded, from building new storage and a new car park, to include getting an adequate electricity supply connected (previously, the main system fuse was repeatedly being blown – and it’s not just a relay that you can reset with a switch), planning ecologically-sound heating and cooking systems, replacing the septic tank waste system and more.
Despite our best efforts, Scottish and Southern doesn’t look as though it’s going to get the power supply upgraded until March (which, in the light of the current lockdown, might not delay us any more than Boris does). If that gets pushed back, though, we certainly still hope to be cooking a delicious, if slightly limited, menu until we’ve got all the electrics sorted out.
You might be aware that we had originally hoped to reopen in the summer. A range of circumstances, many of them unforeseen or unforeseeable – including some related to the current pandemic and being unable to get work completed or, in some cases, even booked in – meant that we were unable to open at that time. Rather than now setting a date that we may not be able to meet, we are just trying to get everything that absolutely has to be done ticked off the list, even if we don’t quite have all facilities on stream to start with. It is crucial, however, that we really do have everything in place that will ensure we can safely welcome you back to a pub where you can feel comfortable both in the overall milieu and ambience and in the measures we have taken to prevent coronavirus transmission. We absolutely cannot wait to do that and, as soon as we can give you a date, we will.
So, let me just say thank you for your interest and your support and we really do hope to see you soon!
The guys are making rapid progess with the car park which, now, becomes a crucial element in the re-opening plan. Unfortunately, the storage we need will take up to 4 months to get in place because of the standard COVID-19 excuse and that’s just too long to wait to get the pub open. So we’re going to need to use a bit of the car park for temporary storage, while we wait for a more permanent solution.
We still have a bit more to do but getting any form of adequate storage sorted out is a big step to re-opening.