A community response that could bring national recognition

Featured Business 19 August 2020
Vanessa from the Chequers Inn

We’re delighted to report that our customers, Tim and Vanessa Mulholland, are in contention for a prestigious accolade. The Chequers Inn in Dorset, which they own and run, has been nominated for the Punch Pubs & Co Pub Hero of the Year category in the Great British Pub Awards 2020

This year the award will commend the special efforts of the nation’s ‘Pub Heroes’ in serving their communities during the Coronavirus pandemic. The couple have already won the South West Regional Lockdown Hero Award for Punch Taverns and will now compete for the national award. 

A community-first response

When the pandemic struck, Tim and Vanessa were still relative newcomers at the spacious old pub in the village of Lytchett Matravers, near Poole in Dorset. However, as we previously reported, they made considerable efforts to support their community, even when government mandates forced them to close their doors.

As Vanessa admits, it was a real challenge. “We spent two years building the business and when lockdown happened we feared the worst. But, as the weeks went by, we realised we could get hold of many items that the community couldn’t.” 


The Chequers Inn

They began by offering a takeaway service

Their early offerings included a popular Sunday carvery, along with fruit and veg boxes and basic groceries. Then, working with the village’s Facebook group, they sent meals to key workers, including NHS staff, supermarket employees and teachers. They also responded to an appeal for stationery to help parents home-school their children 

Efforts like these have ingrained the Chequers in local hearts. The feeling is mutual. “We are very lucky to have such a wonderful community where everyone pulled together during those difficult days to help each other out.”  

The award is decided by a public vote, so we wish them the very best of luck. “Winning this award would be phenomenal and could make a real difference for our business.”

If you’ve been inspired by Tim and Vanessa’s response to Coronavirus and want to show your support for them, you can cast your vote here.

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