The Merry Harriers is undergoing refurbishment under its new ownership, beginning with a striking new sandy-coloured forecourt surface already labelled by locals as “the beach”.
International businessman and entrepreneur Peter de Savary and his family acquired the pub a month ago from previous owners Colin and Julie Stoneley. Regulars at the 16th Century freehouse said a fond farewell to Colin and Julie, who ran the pub for nine years, taking over from the Beasley family, who had been in residence for the previous 40.
In a Facebook posting as they prepared to depart the Stoneleys wrote: “We hand over the Merry Harriers to the next “caretakers”. It has been an absolute pleasure to be a part of its 427 year history and to have worked with, met and served so many fabulous people. Thank you for your support…and keep supporting your village pub for many years to come.”
Their final weekend on May 20th and 21st was celebrated with live bands and the Stoneleys said that they were proud of the variety and quality of the music sessions staged during their time at the helm.
The de Savary family, who recently moved into the area, have ambitious plans for the Harriers and Peter de Savary is expected to attend a forthcoming meeting of the parish council to outline his proposals. In the meantime a great deal of work has been undertaken, including the new surface, a sprucing up of paintwork and signs, new benches, landscaping and kitchen equipment.