There were big celebrations at the end of March when the Tally Ho finally re-opened after two years of closure and over a year of hard work to buy and run it as South Devon’s first community pub. Between the purchase on Monday March 17th and the opening on Friday March 28th, a willing band of volunteers worked furiously to get the pub looking its best. Everybody agreed it was a job well done – the hundred or so people who packed the bar on opening night were very impressed with the new décor and all were very happy and excited to be back in the Tally. There was much merriment and raising of glasses! Local people and businesses have been very supportive, as has the press – the opening featured in many local papers, on Radio Devon, Heart Radio and was filmed by Spotlight.
Word had quickly spread that the Tally was back in action and by Mothers’ Day, it was fully booked. Those who could not get a table, sat outside in the garden and enjoyed the good local ale and sunshine. Diners were full of praise for the food prepared by chef, Chris Webley, and the warm welcome provided by landlady, Hollie Brockwell. The couple were helped by a bevy of volunteers, working in the kitchen and waiting on tables. A real community effort!
Many people who came over the weekend knew the Tally of old.There were lots of fond memories shared of drinking there in the 60’s and 70’s when it was a popular place to socialise. First to book for Mothers’ Day were Karen Young and her brother, Tim Budd. Their grandfather was Sydney Matters, who ran the pub from 1938 to 1952 (it was called the Bolton Arms back then). Karen has written to say: “Our Parents, Vera and Peter Budd, are buried in the Churchyard where they were married in 1940 and we visit regularly and have so missed not being able to go to the pub for lunch… Just to say again how much we enjoyed being able to come to the Tally Ho again for lunch! Please pass on our congratulations to everyone involved and we wish you all great success… We have so many happy memories of Littlehempston, the Church and the Pub.”
The official opening is on Saturday April 26th. Totnes Band will open the celebrations at 3pm and local MP, Dr Sarah Wollaston, will cut the tape at 3.30pm. Then it’s time for cake and more entertainment, courtsey of a local singer and friends! And at around 5.30pm, the Cornishman steam train pulled by two engines will pass en route from London to Truro. Caps in the air everyone!
Everybody is most welcome at this event – the more the merrier! For more photos, go to the Tally Ho website.