Second Anniversary at The Brook Inn

The landlords of the community-owned Brook Inn in Washbrook celebrated their second anniversary in charge last month (August) as pubs emerged from the COVID-19 lockdown.

Managers Cat and Charlie said seeing customers again had been the perfect tonic to the months of enforced closure during which they’d given the pub a facelift. The couple have decorated inside the pub and expanded the beer garden to allow for more social distancing inside and outside the Brook.

Charlie said: “It’s been a tough few months for everyone, not just us here at the Brook Inn. It’s very much the hub of the community, although our customers come from miles around to eat and drink at the Brook. Seeing customers walk through the door again has been a great boost to us all.”

Cat, Charlie and their son Bear took over the tenancy of the pub in August 2018, four years after the community raised £400,000 to buy the Brook Inn during which they employed managers to run the pub.The pub continues to specialise in gluten-free food, earning an enviable reputation across East Anglia for their menus which also include vegetarian, vegan and dairy-free options, as well as local wines and beers.

Pub director Alan Amphlett Lewis said the couple and their staff had been greatly missed during lockdown. He said: “When we bought the pub we first wanted to secure its future and then have a busy and successful pub offering great food and drink. Cat and Charlie achieved that. It was such a shame to see that put on hold because of COVID-19 as they’d all worked so hard to build up the reputation.

“Hopefully things will continue to settle down and the Brook and other businesses can carry on trading. Cat and Charlie have been a credit to the village and are much loved.”

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