Landlord's 'use them or lose them' plea after closing Pytchley pub

Another pub has closed its doors

By Sam Wildman
Wednesday, 20th July 2022, 6:30 am

A Pytchley pub landlord who shut up shop after nine years at the helm has urged drinkers and diners to ‘give the little guys a chance’.

Chris Jones had run The Overstone Arms in Stringers Hill since 2013 but called it a day earlier this month.

He said the hostelry struggled for footfall which, combined with rising beer prices and soaring energy bills, meant it was no longer sustainable for his family.

The Overstone Arms, Pytchley

And he urged drinkers and diners to support their local venues or face losing them – adding that the nation is witnessing the ‘demise of the quaint village pub’.

He said: "We have invested nine years of our lives and money into this. When we took it on it was closed and tatty and we turned it into a really lovely place to go.

"I would say to people that if you are going out, think about where you’re going.

"Just for the sake of a couple of miles drive past Pizza Hut and McDonald’s. They’ll look after themselves – give the little guys a chance.”

The 17th Century coaching inn, owned by the Stonegate Group, is currently sitting empty with those interested in taking it on able to register for information online.

Chris said a number of people have shown an interest but that there have been no takers so far, adding that he was sad to have to close the pub.

He said: "You see a loss of footfall because people haven’t got the money and then the increased costs eat into your profit as well.

"It just got to the point of no return. We’re a family with three kids and it’s not a job, it’s a lifestyle.”

The Stonegate Group has been contacted for comment.

The closure comes weeks after CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, called for interventions to protect the great British pub after hundreds shut their doors for good.

CAMRA chairman Nik Antona said: “Pubs are not only vital employers, but they are key to community life up and down the country...governments across the UK must do more to make sure pub businesses can survive the cost of business crisis, and that consumers can still support their local pubs at a time when household budgets are being squeezed.”