Star Pubs & Bars and Devon-based family-run pub company Webb Enterprises are breaking ground on a £250,000 refurbishment of The Saddlers at Lympstone in time for the pub to reopen at the end of May.
The investment will help meet demand for The Saddlers’ popular carvery by expanding its dining space with a new 40-seater restaurant extension complete with its own south-facing patio.
The increased capacity will reduce overflow dining in the bar, enabling it to focus on customers wanting to enjoy drinks and socialising.
The project, which includes a kitchen refit, will upgrade the 17th-century pub throughout in keeping with its traditional feel.
Webb Enterprises has four leased food-led pubs in Devon. It took over The Saddlers in 2015 and has established it as a quality carvery known for its customer service and large outdoor space which can seat 150 people.
Keith Webb, founder of Webb Enterprises, said: “Demand outstrips supply at The Saddlers most weekends and all week, and during the tourist season we regularly have to turn customers away. We’ve built up a loyal local following year round and get a lot of tourist trade.
“Despite Covid, I’m confident to invest and that this refurbishment will pay off. People are desperate to get back to pubs and, if the experience is right, there’ll be no problem getting customers through the doors.
“Last summer was the busiest ever at all our pubs. Local holiday cottage owners are reporting record bookings in Devon this year. With the staycation market so strong, summer 2021 should be a bumper one if restrictions completely lift in June. A good summer is key to bouncing back and the refurbishment will help with this.”