Roebuck Inn pub in Wickham closes as landlady moves on to new undisclosed venue - with her entire 20-strong staff

A LANDLADY has said it’s ‘the end of an era’ as she leaves a pub - taking 20 staff with her to a new pub.

Monday, 28th June 2021, 10:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 29th June 2021, 11:17 am

Sara Pollard-Dambach’s stint at the The Roebuck Inn in Wickham ended on Sunday with the owner in talks with new tenants.

The pub reopened in September 2020 with Sara behind the bar, hiring new staff and reporting a significant turnover.

Sara said her team has ‘enjoyed every moment’ at the pub and has loved serving the community.

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The team at the Roebuck Inn. Picture: Keith Woodland (270621-4)
The team at the Roebuck Inn. Picture: Keith Woodland (270621-4)

However, negotiations between Sara and the property owner into buying or leasing the pub have ended with her leaving.

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Sarah said: ‘I had never owned a pub before but wanted to bring it back to life.

‘We have had an incredibly successful time here, I’ve enjoyed every moment.

‘We are incredibly proud to say we’ve hired 20 staff members, and turned over £150,000 in the four and a half months we were open to the public.

‘It’s been absolutely amazing - every single one of us has loved being here. To be able to give 20 people a job during a national pandemic has been one of the highlights of my life.

‘The community spirit and the community love is so much.’

She handed over the keys after negotiations floundered with the pub owner.

Peter Rogers is director of Concept APC, the Southsea-based company that owns The Roebuck Inn.

Mr Rogers said he ‘tried very hard to assist them in order to make their business a success’.

He added that despite some claims the pub would be knocked down or converted to flats ‘there are no present plans to develop or demolish the Roebuck’.

He added: ‘We are presently talking to several experienced potential tenants.

‘I am upset that we did not achieve a mutual agreement. I genuinely wish them and their staff happiness and success in the future.’

Sara said she has big plans for her team. She said: ‘We’ll leave the keys on Wednesday morning and leave it all behind.

‘It’s a real shame. It’s the end of an era.

‘The good news is that my entire team and myself are in negotiations to move somewhere else with a 10-year lease.

‘We’ll go on to the next adventure.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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