With August coming to an end – and the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme along with it – we’re looking at the next few months and how we should move forward. The current social distancing measures don’t look as though they’re going to change anytime soon, so we won’t be able to go back to having all 16 tables inside for a while (probably not until next year) and the weather is going to make the beer garden less of an option. So we are going to clear the darts area and the library area and put two more tables back in, so we will be able to seat more customers inside the pub.
Private dining rooms
We’re also going to convert the three downstairs B&B rooms into ‘private dining rooms’ and put a table in each of them. As the weather gets colder these rooms will help to maximise the number of indoor covers we can offer. You will soon be able to reserve a specific room for your party of up to six people, allowing you to have a special function in a secluded (and fully socially distanced) space, complete with your own ‘en suite’ facilities!
Opening hours changes
We’ve also decided that we’re going to close on Mondays and Tuesdays during the next three months. We’ll be able to concentrate our staff on working the busier days, and not spend money on heating, lights and staff for times when we’d often only have one or two customers in the pub. We understand that will be a disappointment for some customers, who like a quiet pint or a meal on a Monday or Tuesday evening, but the levels of trade at the moment (especially the low numbers of B&B bookings) means it is just not viable for us to be open all day, seven days a week. We’re sure we’ll be back to being ‘open all hours’ in due course, but just not yet.
This will mean our monthly pub quiz will be moving back online for the next few months and we’ll also be bringing back some of the events from lockdown like ‘Cooking with Kate’ and the virtual beer tasting so that we will be holding 2 ‘at home’ events a month.
At the other end of the week, however, we’ll be opening up again on Saturday mornings and offering breakfast for the first time since March. You will shortly be able to book tables for Saturday morning breakfasts using our online ‘table agent’ booking system, just as you can for lunches and dinners. Lots of people have been asking us about breakfasts, so we look forward to seeing you back in for your “Croxton Farmer’s Breakfast” on Saturday mornings.
We’re also saying goodbye to a few members of staff this month. Michael is moving on to work at a pub nearer to his family’s new home. Millie is going back to University in Cardiff, although we hope to have her back at Christmas. Emily has left us to pursue her own business, which is a very exciting venture for her. And Abbie will be leaving us soon – to take on a great opportunity, which we will share with you all soon. We’re very grateful for all their hard work, and wish them all well in the future.
Lastly we wanted to say thank you. The last six months have been the strangest and most difficult in the five years we’ve been open and we wouldn’t have been able to get through them without the support of such wonderful customers. Lockdown was challenging in many ways, but the re-opening period has been even more challenging. The way everyone has accomodated to our new ways of working, recognising how difficult things have been for our staff, and not making things any more difficult than they needed to be, has been very much appreciated by all of us. We hope we’ve helped you to feel safe at the Geese and Fountain, and that your visits here have still been fun, and enjoyable. We hope to share many more good times with you over the next few months, and we’re already starting to think about Christmas and New Year’s Eve.