One Year On: The Coach & Horses
In August 2018, Brian Love of Christie Finance helped Paul Wright to finance the purchase of The Coach & Horses, a country pub set in the heart of South Downs. One year on, Paul and his partner Dave reflect on the work they have put in to turn this local staple into a popular destination venue.
After having trained as a chef, Paul developed his career within the hospitality industry, more latterly holding senior positions as general manager in a number of high-profile hotels. The well-rounded experience that Paul had developed stood him in good stead to make the leap to owner-operator with the acquisition of The Coach & Horses in the rural village of Compton, near Chichester. Specialist commercial mortgage broker Christie Finance helped Paul secure the funding required to purchase the freehold of the 16th century pub from the previous owners who were retiring after 33 years of ownership.
The pub had seen a lessening in trade prior to Paul and Dave’s takeover, however, thanks to their passion and dedication, one year later, the Coach & Horses has completely reinvented itself. We revisited the Coach & Horses and spoke to Paul to find out how his year has been:
What was the first thing you changed at the pub upon getting the keys?
The first thing we changed was the welcome and the front bar. We wanted to make sure everyone felt welcome, whether they were loyal locals or visitors to the area. The front bar also got a makeover, all done in a week with a lot of help from friends and family.
Was that the biggest change the pub has seen?
The biggest change has been upstairs. We have created our own apartment and added three letting rooms as part of the B&B offering, growing the business.
What’s been your favourite moment of the last year?
We have many, our favourite moments have always been from the positive feedback we have received together, and the continued support of the village, especially when we held our first birthday party.
What has been the biggest milestone you’ve reached?
Reaching our first year knowing we had changed the pub for the better.
Sum up the last year in 3 words
Hard bloody work! They were the first three words we both said. But thoroughly enjoyable and we’re proud to have done what we have done so far. There’s still more to do, but Rome wasn’t built in a day. We just need the patience to get things done in time rather than tomorrow.
Christie Finance help business owners every day, whether it be providing a mortgage solution that’s right for you or an unsecured loan that could help buy equipment or refurbish and give your business a new lease of life.