A popular Isle of Wight pub has unveiled its grand refurbishment plans which could provide boutique B&B rooms, cater to more guests and in turn create more jobs.
The Buddle Inn in Niton, part of Character Inns, closed in October and is set to reopen next Spring after an investment which the group hopes will help the pub thrive for many years to come.
There are already four bedrooms above the main pub floor, but are said to be currently underutilised, so with a refurbishment en-suite bathrooms could be added and the rooms decorated to provide high-quality accommodation.
A storeroom could also be turned into a kitchen which would serve the pub’s function room as the current kitchen does not have the space or capacity to serve both areas at the same time and limits customer numbers during busy periods.
The kitchen could allow the pub to run functions for up to 70 guests.
Planning documents submitted to the Isle of Wight Council say creating a dedicated kitchen will improve the viability of the rural business and create more jobs, with the potential for five more full-time and five more part-time employees.
An extraction system could be installed and a flue — painted matte black — added to the Grade II listed building.
A disabled toilet could also be provided by adapting the existing female toilet.
Plans say the work could be relatively minor to the listed building to improve its facilities and accommodation, which would not have a significant impact on its historic character.
A statement from Character Inns, submitted to the council, said due to the challenging trading environment for hospitality businesses it has become increasingly important to utilise all parts of the Buddle to increase revenues to ensure long-term financial viability.
You can view the application, 23/02042/FUL, on the Isle of Wight Council’s planning register. Comments can be submitted until January 3.
The pub had been able to stay open over the winter in previous years but it has made the decision to close this year, rather than guests have a sub-standard experience with all the work and disruption going on.