The Marquis of Granby is owned by wife and husband team Sara Barton and Sean McArdle, who also run the Brewster’s Brewery at Grantham.
Sara set up the Brewster’s Brewery in 1998 and was one of the tiny band of female pioneers working in the brewing industry.
The Marquis of Granby is a small country pub located in the heart of the Vale of Belvoir, around 14 miles from the centre of Nottingham.
The Pub, which is the last one in the village after the closure of the Boot & Shoe in 2015 which was sold for housing.
The site is also the brewery tap for Brewster’s Brewery.
There is no shop in either Granby or any of the surrounding villages. Both Sara and Sean felt that a grocery and coffee shop would benefit the community as there is no other facilities other than the village hall.
The pub is too small to sustain a typical pub food operation and the unused kitchen was transformed into a small grocery and coffee shop.
The Dragon Street Stores and Coffee Shop were opened to support people living in Granby and the surrounding villages as it is a 9-mile round trip to the nearest supermarket and transport links are limited in the area.
Outcomes so far:
- The village store is providing a range of essentials such as bread, milk, cheese saving people the drive to the nearest town. There is a substantial older population who benefit from the local shop due to the limited bus service.
- There are new customers coming into the shop from the neighbouring villages, which is driving new business.
- The coffee shop is allowing for an area for people to socialise who are not traditional pubgoers.
- The coffee shop is proving popular at the weekends and has started to grow; especially with cyclists and people from a local Park Run which has started nearby. The publicans are getting some signs put out around the area to guide cyclists to the coffee shop as they may not be aware of it.
Lessons to learn:
- The shop works well as the person already working behind the bar can also serve customers in the shop.
- Top sales items tend to be treat based like chocolate, biscuits, wine and ice-cream. Local products have been popular but they have to ensure they are not too expensive.
- Local children like the shop and often pop down either by themselves or with parents; usually for sweets and treats.
- Brewster’s Brewery beers and continental styles sell well but other craft beers are not proving popular.
- They have had to keep a close eye on best before dates as some items bought had fairly short best before dates and had to be discounted.
- Fresh products are hard to predict; sometimes milk and eggs sell and sometimes they don’t. The shop is to focus on items with longer best before dates.
Pub is The Hub regional advisor Nigel Williams said: “The village store has been great in helping to support those living locally and the coffee shop is really key in proving an opportunity for local people to connect and socialise.”