Meet the landlord: Herbie Armstrong

Herbie Armstrong
Herbie Armstrong
James Taylor at his desk in his office at 116 High Street, Old Portsmouth.

Those halcyon days when pen and paper just worked!

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HERBIE Armstrong’s life has been an exciting adventure from humble roots in Ireland to showbiz glamour.

The guitarist was born in Belfast, the same city as his friend Van Morrison.

From the age of 14, Herbie was performing to large crowds. He began his music life working in Irish show bands touring the Emerald Isle.

As pop became more popular, he worked with the best, including Van Morrison, and toured the world performing in arenas and appearing in television shows alongside The Blues Brothers, Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi.

He joined the band Yellow Dog and then Fox before going solo.

Later in life and looking for a new adventure, he opened a restaurant in London and then a music venue in Sheffield.

But it was family trips to West Wittering beach that convinced Herbie and his wife Elizabeth, a Swedish-born interior designer, that they wanted a pub on the south coast.

Herbie said: ‘We used to go to West Wittering a lot.

‘We thought it would be nice to find somewhere in this area.

‘We started looking and we found The Fountain Inn.

‘I said I want a pub, but I want a music pub, and that’s what happened. I had the opportunity to play again.

‘It was the best vehicle to be able to play music and make a living.’

The couple have two sons and two daughters.

Herbie and Elizabeth make a great team at running the pub and hotel business.

‘We met in London a long time ago through mutual friends,’ said Herbie.

‘We have been together for over 30 years.’