Pub-inspired songs, the power of welcoming creative groups to your pub and a poetry were all featured when Pub is The Hub featured in a ‘takeover’ of the Jon Wright show on BBC Radio Suffolk and BBC Radio Norfolk.
PiTH’s regional advisor for East Anglia Terry Stork featured in the show, alongside Rosa Torr from Creative Lives and actor and poet Alexandra Ewing, who grew up in a Suffolk pub and who wrote a ‘National Poem of Thanks to Our Nation’s Publicans’ as part of Pub is The Hub’s ‘Winter Warmers’ initiative, in partnership with INN Crowd, Live performances in pubs – Inn Crowd, during the pandemic.
The show focused on the ‘Pubs Welcoming Creativity’ initiative from Creative Lives , Pubs Welcoming Creativity – Toolkit | Creative Lives (creative-lives.org), which Pub is The Hub is supporting, and featured interviews with The Locks Inn Community Pub in Geldeston, Suffolk and The Blue Bell Inn in Stoke Ferry, Norfolk, who are both pubs which welcome creative activity and who Pub is The Hub has supported with setting up community cafes.
Pubs welcoming creative groups
Jodie Barrett, manager of The Locks Inn Community Pub, who host many creative groups including folk nights, Irish music nights, traditional song and storytelling nights, featured in an interview at The Locks Inn Community Pub, said: “The pub is widely known for its music and events and it is great that we have a number of groups who come along and support the pub. It is really special. We have volunteers who help run the events and enjoy being involved.”
She added: “Pubs and creative groups match together well I think because it is another way of getting people together. You can very easily be at home enjoying crafting but, just like the conversations we have at the pub’s book club, you will be surprised at how many other interested people are in hearing what crafts other people are passionate about. People can then very comfortably sit there and talk to others as they have the knowledge and the skills.”
Lyn Juniper-Solley, a member of the weekly craft group that meets at The Blue Bell at Stoke Ferry, Norfolk, said during the interview aired on the show: “A pub is a wonderfully relaxed atmosphere. It feels much more casual and more inviting for people to join in a group in that atmosphere.”
Poem of thanks to publicans featured
The show also featured poet and actor Alexandra Ewing, from Suffolk, reading the poem of thanks for publicans she penned as part of PiTH’s ‘Winter Warmers’ initiative during the pandemic in partnership with INN CROWD. Enjoy the poem here: Alexandra Ewing: The Public House Rumbles – Inn Crowd
Terry’s pick of pub-related tunes
Advisor Terry Stork was also asked to select songs to play during the show. His pub inspired song choices include:
Chumbawamba – Tubthumping
Terry said: “I chose this song as it reminds me of the resilience of pubs and publicans. One of the great things about the pub industry is the ability to innovate and adapt to new market conditions. Publicans did it during the pandemic in responding to community needs, and are also doing again now, with initiatives such as offering warm spaces. Pubs have huge social value.”
The Beatles – Eleanor Rigby
This song was picked as Pub is The Hub helps publicans to tackle loneliness in their local areas through our Community Services Fund pub diversification projects, such as community cafés and shops which help publicans reach out to people who may be feeling lonely or at risk of social isolation, by offering them a place to meet with others and socialise. We also have a range of resources to help publicans tackle loneliness in their local areas at: Join Inn – Last Orders for Loneliness – Pub is The Hub,
Simply Red – Money’s Too Tight (To Mention)
I selected this classic as with the current energy crisis people at home are finding it difficult to heat their homes, and publicans are also finding it difficult, so why not put the two together. People can find a space in the pub to do a creative activity, play games etc. It is a win win for both sides as the publican has people in the pub buying food and drink and the people in the pub aren’t paying for energy back home.
Joe Cocker – With a Little Help from My Friends
Pub is The Hub is very much a family, a family of advisors, supporters and publicans, and I chose this to reflect this.
Yazz – The Only Way is Up
It is really challenging times for pubs at present. I chose this song to send some positive vibes about the future of the British pub.
Listen to the full ‘Pub is The Hub Takeover’ show here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0dg1j90