We hope this finds you and your family and friends well after this strange and very difficult last eighteen months.
Thank you very much for being shareholders in the buildings of our community pub in Coverdale. Your support has been crucial to the survival of the venture in what has been a particularly challenging time for the hospitality industry, we are very grateful to you.
The Board have continued to work with our tenants to support them through this last year in our community pub, while at the same time acting in the best interests of all our shareholders.
You will be aware that many pubs that closed during the various Lockdowns over the last year have been unable to re-open at all, and we are very relieved that the Foresters Arms is not one of those.
After that first Lockdown in March 2020 was released on 4th July 2020 some customers started using pubs again, including the Foresters Arms, but many customers were very cautious and stayed at home.
I am sure that we were all hoping, not to mention expecting, that life would gradually return to a more normal balance by autumn or a little after - however, it did anything but....
In September 2020 pubs had to reduce their opening hours, and on 5t° November another total lockdown started again for four weeks, meaning closure of the pub apart from takeaway meals. This second lockdown was designed to get the country functioning better for Christmas, but coronavirus variants started to arrive in the UK late in the year, which led to travel and social mixing being greatly curtailed over the festive season. Many potential pub customers were under such high tier regulations in their own part of the UK that they couldn’t visit Coverdale and our community pub, which reopened in early December as was allowed in this area.
To everybody’s dismay, on 5t^ January 2021, England commenced a third complete lockdown —and the pub was forced to close again, apart from takeaway meals.
On 17’h May, at Step Three of the Roadmap for Lockdown release, pubs were allowed to open to serve customers indoors, albeit restricted to their being seated, with table service, and the rule of 6.
The next projected release for Step Four was delayed by four weeks, and it wasn’t until 19th July 2021 that pubs could return to pre-Covid regulations.
We are extremely grateful to our tenants for their stalwart efforts to keep trading under all the changes of rules and regulations.
The Board initially continued to meet virtually, and has met face-to-face since May this year. Our three new directors have brought great enthusiasm and their particular skill-sets to the Board, which has been immensely helpful. Our end of year accounts are healthy and there are no debts or outstanding concerns.
There have been no major outgoings for the CCP. We have taken the opportunity to maintain the exterior of the buildings in the good weather. Keith and Lesley have maintained the excellent appearance internally with fresh decorating, as well as keeping the pub looking at its best from the outside with the lovely array of flowers in tubs and boxes.
On 19th July the remaining Covid-19 restrictions were lifted in England. We are now able to meet in person for our 2021 AGM, which will be on Wednesday 8“ September at 7.30pm in the Coverdale Memorial Hall in Carlton.
We ask that you put the date in your diary and make every effort to attend. It is essential that the AGM is quorate of enough of our members (at least 34 members needed) in order to pass any items on the agenda that require a vote. The Hall is maintained as a Covid- secure venue, and there will be adequate fresh air and space for all attendees.
We will be holding a buffet in the pub following the AGM, as we have in previous years, and attendees at the AGM will be most welcome.
The official letter of invitation and the AGM papers including the Annual Report and accounts of the Coverdale Community Pub Ltd will be sent out nearer the time, but this newsletter is asking you to "Save The Date” in your diary and calendar so that you can join us. Thank you.
We are aware that some of you may have moved since last year to a new postal address or changed email address. If we do not have an email address for you, please consider providing us with one.
Please can you inform John Watson our membership secretary whenever you change postal address, telephone number or email address.
John’s contact details can be found at the top of this Newsletter.
The Board of the Coverdale Community Pub Ltd are looking forward to seeing you all during the summer, as well as at the AGM in the Memorial Hall on 8" September, and afterwards in the Foresters Arms.
An update to our shareholders from Keith and Lesley:
It is my pleasure to write to you and bring you up to date with life at The Foresters. We have just reached the milestone of 6 years in the pub. So we decided to celebrate by bringing the village together with an outside concert featuring Share the Darkness, an Irish band who kept everyone well entertained.
As you will know already, the pandemic has not been kind to the hospitality industry. However, following the recent easing of restrictions, we were looking forward to a good summer. Bookings for accommodation are very healthy, well into October. The pub looks stunning, Lesley has excelled herself with the flowers this year, and we really appreciate the kind comments from locals and visitors alike.
We are currently running a radio campaign for the first time, to encourage people to visit Coverdale and to make the Foresters their destination. This is aired on Dales Radio, 6 times a day 7 days a week for 3 months. We also ran a recruitment advert. Never been done before, we will assess the results in September.
The whole industry is suffering a severe staffing crisis. We are no different. This has forced us to look at reduced opening hours during the day, which is not ideal when running an expensive radio campaign. In the short term, we are also having to reduce our food offering. We are far from the only ones in this position. Many other pubs are facing the same problems. We can but hope that this crisis will ease at some point, and we can resume normal service.
To sum up, the Foresters continues to thrive, albeit with difficulties beyond our control. We very much acknowledge and appreciate the ongoing support from our committee and everyone who visits this amazing pub.
We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the upcoming AGM.
Keith and Lesley