Revolutionary £200,000 boost for Mid Sussex country pub

The Cowdray Arms, near Balcombe SUS-190725-121638001
The Cowdray Arms, near Balcombe SUS-190725-121638001

A country pub in Mid Sussex has undergone a revolutionary £200,000 facelift.

The Cowdray Arms, near Balcombe, is now hailed as a unique gastropub with rooms - along with a Michelin-starred chef and its own ‘gin corner.’

Newly-refurbished interiror of The Cowdray Arms SUS-190725-121627001

Newly-refurbished interiror of The Cowdray Arms SUS-190725-121627001

The pub - on the B2036 London Road - has benefitted from a cash boost from family-owned brewers Hall & Woodhouse.

The brewers operate in partnership with local entrepreneur Neal Hayes whi is credited with bringing a new lease of life to the Cowdray Arms.

He has transformed it into a gastropub with the property’s outbuildings converted into three boutique bed and breakfast rooms - where guests can haave a basket of breakfast delivered to their door.

The pub’s new ‘gin corner’ showcases local gins from Sussex and Surrey.

And the pub now offers a menu crafted by Michelin-starred chef Stephen Crane, previously head chef at Ockenden Manor. His new menu focuses on local and sustainable produce with all meat and vegetables sourced from local farms, wih fresh fish from Newhaven.

Neal has worked alongside Hall & Woodhouse for more than 10 years, having worked in the pub and hospitality industry for 20 years. He said: “Already the feedback we have received from the community since the re-opening of the pub has been fantastic.

“Our locals are particularly loving the ‘gin corner’ which has filled the gap in our local offering, by providing the community with good-quality gins that they can enjoy in the garden on a sunny day.

“I am really grateful to Hall & Woodhouse for their ongoing support, which has allowed me to turn my ideas into a reality.

“The rooms we have built are stunning and such a brilliant addition to the premises. Living just down the road, I wanted to create something that the community I live in would be proud of, and with Hall & Woodhouse’s help, I have been able to do just that.”