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‘People fought to save this pub’ - New owners of The Crown in Reepham say venue has a bright future

PUBLISHED: 15:25 18 August 2017 | UPDATED: 15:45 18 August 2017

Glen Mallett has refurbished and re-opened The Crown pub in Reepham. Picture: Ian Burt

Glen Mallett has refurbished and re-opened The Crown pub in Reepham. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant 2017

Campaigners rejoiced when an historic mid Norfolk pub was saved from closure three years ago.

The Crown pub in Reepham has been refurbished. Picture: Ian BurtThe Crown pub in Reepham has been refurbished. Picture: Ian Burt

An application to turn The Crown in Reepham into a family home was refused by a planning inspector.

Fears for the pub resurfaced when it closed in April, but new owners Glen and Lisa Mallett say The Crown has a long and bright future, after re-opening this month.

The couple, from Fakenham, are well-known in the Fakenham area.

They have run Fakenham Community Centre for many years, organise the town’s popular annual beer festival, run the shop Sweets ‘n’ Things in Fakenham town centre, run Fakenham Info Hub, the town’s tourist information centre, supply school uniforms for Fakenham’s three schools and run a dry cleaning service.

The Crown pub in Reepham has been refurbished. Picture: Ian BurtThe Crown pub in Reepham has been refurbished. Picture: Ian Burt

On top of this, Mrs Mallet, 47, a former Fakenham town councillor, runs Slimming World groups in Wells and Bawdeswell.

She said: “I like to keep busy. The idea of sitting watching TV just bores me. We’ve got good people around us.

“Reepham is a lovely place, it’s very community-orientated, and I know we can make this work.”

The Crown has been given a major refurbishment, inside and out, and a new pool table has been installed.

Glen Mallett has refurbished and re-opened The Crown pub in Reepham. Picture: Ian BurtGlen Mallett has refurbished and re-opened The Crown pub in Reepham. Picture: Ian Burt

The Malletts won the race to open in time for the Reepham Festival, on August 12.

They will re-establish the pub’s pool and darts teams and plan to open a pub restaurant in September. They are now on the lookout for a head chef.

Mr Mallet, 49, a former operations manager for Suffolk County Council, said: “We ran the bar at Fakenham Town Football Club and have enjoyed running the community centre. We’re going to keep doing that.”

He added: “We’ve always liked going to pubs and I’ve wanted to run one for quite a while now.”

Despite reports that 21 pubs close a week in Britain, Mr Mallett is confident that The Crown has a bright future.

He said: “The response we’ve had so far has been fantastic. We’ve been really busy and we’ve had great feedback with people telling us how great the place looks and how happy they are to see it open again.

“People in Reepham fought to save this pub and it shows how much it means to them.”

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