Raising a glass as business builds up

SALES at a village pub in Comet country have more than trebled, despite the credit crunch, thanks to a major �214,000 investment by pub company Admiral Taverns. The Boot on High Street in Kimpton was given a complete refurbishment in August, which involv

SALES at a village pub in Comet country have more than trebled, despite the credit crunch, thanks to a major �214,000 investment by pub company Admiral Taverns.

The Boot on High Street in Kimpton was given a complete refurbishment in August, which involved creating five bed and breakfast rooms in a disused barn at the back of the pub as well as re-roofing, re-decorating and re-wiring the pub and re-building the conservatory.

Business has been booming ever since, according to Barry and Roberta Smith who have been running The Boot since December 2006.

"We were trading well before the refurbishment but now we're doing even better," said Mr Smith.


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"Roberta and I had invested some of our own money in improving the pub - we replaced the toilets and re-carpeted - but we could only afford to scratch the surface when it came to all the work that needed doing, so the investment from Admiral has been of huge benefit.

"It was Roberta's idea to convert the barn into rooms to let. Although it's been a big job, it's all been worth it as the rooms look fantastic and have proved to be extremely popular."

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The couple have a trusted team of staff, including a full-time chef. The re-decorated restaurant, which serves lunch time snacks evening meals and full English breakfasts, is particularly popular with locals.

Mr Smith added: "The restaurant is busy throughout the week, especially since we introduced breakfast, and is full every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night.

"The revamp has helped us to attract a host of new customers and given us the potential to do so much more," added Mr Smith.

Peter Smith, business development manager for Admiral Taverns, said: "We're keen to support landlords like Roberta and Barry who have a lot of passion and enthusiasm for their pub by giving them a platform to try something new and helping them make the most of their business.

"We feel it's important to invest in popular community pubs and ensure the right people are behind the bar. We have a number of available pubs in the area and are always on the look out for potential landlords.

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