The Caston Blog
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Plans for the Red Lion
by Dan Metcalfe - 16:18 on 21 January 2010
After experiencing the enthusiasm in the village for the re-opening of the Red Lion, Anna and I have been working on a scheme that would enable the enhancement and re-launch of the village pub.
We propose to completely renovate the public house internally and externally (click the drawing below to display a List of Works) to provide a quality destination for drinking and eating at the heart of the village, then convert the existing storage barn into a two bed cottage and provide for an adjacent new three bed cottage.
New seating and landscaped areas will be provided to the front of the building.
As part of the proposal we will make the following conditions:
The pub will be fully refurbished and opened before any other building takes place. This refurbishment will be inside and out including landscaping and will take a massive investment.
We will take responsibility for opening and sourcing quality management for the pub (we have experience at The Sun Inn www.suninn.co.uk in Hawkshead which we have owned for several years)
The owners/occupiers of the new houses will be covenanted not to object to the pub’s existence.
We will work with CAMRA and the Prince of Wales’ "Pub is the Hub" charity (www.pubisthehub.org.uk)and consult with locals to bring about a sustainable local offering.
The aim is to create a business and living quarters which will appeal to a dedicated couple seeking a village pub lifestyle, and which can survive without huge turnover.
There will be no significant loss of car parking.
There will be a small children’s/family outside area - sufficient for a "village pub".
We will be holding a small exhibition of the plans in the village hall on Thursday, 28th January between 4pm and 6:45pm.
Further plans and pictures showing different angles will be available on our architect’s website shortly; we will publicise the link to this site when they have been uploaded.
We would like to hear your comments before we decide whether to take this proposal before the parish and local councils.
If we can harness the enthusiasm shown so far for the village pub then I am sure we can turn it into a success story.
(Readers are invited to make their comments below. Ed)
It will be somewhere for the village community to meet. The owner with a proven track record is offering something for our village. Let's get our name back on the map for cyclists, walkers and visitors to Norfolk. What the owners need is a response from us showing local support. If we do not support the Pub then it could be lost.
The offer is good food, good beer and a local community asset. If as a community we support it there is no reason why this venture should fail.
If Dan can charge a realistic rent, that the business can afford at every stage of its development and the new landlord make a good living from a lively well supported pub that in turn does not have to charge exhorbitant prices then I am greatly encouraged by this plan.
My family and i would like to express our delight in your aim to re-open the Red lion. My family and i like to meet every Friday evening for a drink and sometimes food and the thought of being able to 'pop out for a pint' anytime is fantastic. At the moment we use The Waggon and Horses in Griston which has a great landlord, good food and more importantly great ale. We have been living in the village long enough to remember the pub in good shape and hope with your experience and our support that this can happen again. I think that everyone knew there would have to be a compromise and building regulations have held this pub back in the past. I wish you luck in your application for revised planning permission after all we just wanted a pub back.
Phil Crosthwaite and family
Cloverleaf home interiors
Bridge House Farm
The publican on The Red Lion from 1797 until 1803 was my wife's ancestor George Beaumont. He owned a good deal of land in the village and his second child William Henry is buried in the church yard - the stone is still clear to read.
As a result we have visited your lovely village many times and undertaken a great deal of research about it.
To think of it returning to a vibrant focus of the community as it was over 200 years ago is heartwarming.
Good luck to you and everyone in Caston.
(What an excellent comment - thank you Ed.)
Kevin and Teresa Pell
The Old Bakery,
It is anticipated that the Red Lion will be open for the summer.
The new managers have been selected and have a proven record in the culinary department
We are currently located in a community village pub in a Leicestershire village called Claybrooke Magna, where we have traded successfully for the past 3 years. Our business is very much food led but also providing a comfortable and welcoming environment for local customers to get together over a pint or 2!
We have been in the pub trade for 15 years so we will bring a wealth of experience to the Red Lion. We plan to relocate in October 2011 with a view to hopefully opening the pub in mid November. We are hugely excited about the new challenges that lie ahead and are hopeful that the local community will support us in our quest to make the Red Lion a wonderful community pub as it once was.
I am a trained chef and plan to offer a menu to suit all focusing on using local produce and offering a selection of good hearty home cooked foods. We also plan to hopefully open the pub from 10am offering coffees and home made cakes, thus making the pub more accessible at different times of the day.
So, I can certainly quash rumours of an Italian restaurant .... however there may be some pasta dishes from time to time!
Obviously, as we are opening a new business and starting from scratch we will need to recruit a new team of staff. So if there is anybody who is interested in offering their skills to the Red Lion please do not hesitate to contact me via my email. I will be re locating to the Red Lion from 1st October in order to get the business operational so will be conducting interviews thereafter.
Myself, Barry and Sydney very much look forward to meeting you all at the Red Lion.
(to email Carrie, click on her underlined name above. Ed.)
Restored! A place to socialise and meet your neighbours. Make new friends and create a real village community.
(Amanda, you can email Carrie by clicking on her name above. Ed)
I have recruited several members of staff already and I'm pleased to say that each and every one of them lives locally which is fantastic for the community. And I'm thrilled with my choice I have met some great people so far.
However, I am still looking for a cleaner ( or possibly 2 to split the week). A reliable cleaner is an invaluable part of the team so if anybody is interested please do not hesitate to contact me via my email.
We are on schedule to open on or around Thursday 17th November which is all very exciting , in good time for Christmas. We very much look forward to seeing you all in the Red Lion for a celebratory drink.
Carrie, Barry & Sydney
It was very close but we managed to open the Red Lion on 17th November and we were packed to the rafters with many locals and familiar faces. We've had a good start and hopefully it will continue and we will see more Caston residents visiting the pub in the future.
The coffee machine has now arrived so we will be serving coffees and homemade cakes from 10 am on Wednesday 30th November serving Tuesday - Sunday ..... so come and give us a try !
The phone number for the Red Lion is 01953 483858 so don't hesitate to book a table to eat or just pop in for a drink.
We look forward to seeing you all at the Red Lion soon.
Carrie, Barry & Sydney
Our local MP George Freeman will be visiting the Red Lion this coming Friday 9th December from 7.30 pm onwards to show his support and meet the residents of Caston.So do come along and have " a pint with your MP". A good opportunity to meet him in the flesh and possibly raise some local issues that any of you may have ???
Hope to see some local faces !
Carrie, Barry & Sydney
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