Autumn 2021 Newsletter

It's our 3rd Anniversary!  Time flies - but can you remember when we first took on the pub just 3 years ago.  Our first bonfire of many started us on our way, as we cleared the place out.  Tom and Becci were offered the tenancy on bonfire night and look how far we have come since then.

Renovation works

Since day one we have been on with renovation works, which were all part of the original Business Plan.  Three years on and we are more or less there including completion of the garden area, which was a scheme we originally identified, but did not have enough money for when we set off.  With grant assistance for some of the projects picked up along the way we have achieved what we set out to do and all within budget.  So having spent around £200,000 on the renovations there is small capital balance left of approximately £14,000.

Whilst there may be some minor projects to contemplate over the next couple of years, the balance should see us through as we don't envisage anything more significant over this period.  We are even over halfway into paying off our original loan.  All of this puts us in a good position and hopefully (fingers crossed) with the impact of Covid largely behind us it is onwards and upwards!

Gardening volunteers

The new garden area has been a success all summer and proven a great asset to the pub.

Whilst Tom would never pretend to be the Monty Don of Exelby, a band of volunteers have come together to help him with maintaining the gardens.  There has always been volunteer help with planting and establishing the gardens, but a group have now formed a core to work on a more regular basis.  So, thanks to Carole Hutchinson, Joanne Haigh, Jan Deighton, Ray Ward and their helpers and not forgetting those who have helped with establishing the gardens in the past.  They have organised a gardening calendar and if you would like to join them the details are here:

If you would like to volunteer to help with any of these please contact to let us know your availability.  Further details will then be sent to you confirming arrangements for the day.
General garden maintenance  12th November 11.00 -12.30
Preparation for over wintering 30th November 14.00 - 15.30

Car park

Progress with finishing off the car park is pretty much as reported in the summer newsletter.  This is still dependent on utility connections being made to the housing development which has continued to progress over the summer months.

Book swap facility

As an addition to the new garden area a shed has been provided to provide a library for book swaps.   This will be fitted out over the next few weeks and then details of how it will all work will be circulated by the volunteer librarians - Karen Ward, Hazel Martin and Joy Little.


Recently a community defibrillator has been installed at the front of pub for public use.  Whilst it is something you hope you don't need; we are pleased to be able to host this just in case.

Helen Bullock took up the initiative and it has been paid for and provided by the Parish Council and Saving Hearts, Northallerton.  Costs of electrical installation were donated by Jason Harding (who has done all the electrical work in the pub).  The ongoing electric costs are to be picked up by Tom and Becci.  Local fundraising will then pay for the annual maintenance costs alongside Peter Hart and Tony Ward who have volunteered to check the equipment periodically.  Nice one!

Rural Oscars

Our last newsletter let you know that we had won regional Pub of the year in the Countryside Alliance awards.  That took us through into the national finals where we were highly commended as runner up!  A couple of excellent results.

And if that is not enough, we have just learnt that we are nominated as finalists in Plunkett's Rural Community Business 'Rural Vision Technology' category.

Share Interest Payments

Previous newsletters have covered the payment of the 3% shareholder interest as agreed at the Annual Member Meeting in May 2021.  There are still some cheque payments that have not been cashed and this is just a reminder that they may expire 6 months from when dated.  If cheques are not cashed the funds will be returned to our accounts.  For the future, we are encouraging all shareholders to receive interest payments by BACS.  If you have not already done so, please send an email to:

Please include the following details:



Sort code

Account Number


Happy anniversary!  It's been worth it.  Cheers!



Chairman and on behalf of the Directors