Kiwi community spirit served up in Tally

There are new faces behind the bar of the Tally Ho in Littlehempston, as the next chapter in the pub’s long history begins. The 187 shareholders of South Ham’s first community pub have decided to hand over the management reins to tenants and recently a long term tenancy agreement was signed with Kelly and Mike Joiner, who are now installed in the pub with their son, Isaac.

This is shaping up to be a match made in heaven. Kelly and Mike owned a successful bar restaurant in a small village called Peel Forest in South Canterbury, New Zealand, that had a strong community bias, with locals travelling miles to get there. They were hunting for a similar business to run on their return to England, when they were delighted to find an ad for a tenancy on a small rural pub.

And they come fully prepared: they’re used to hard work, long hours and the challenge of running a pub in an out of the way location. They’re bringing loads of energy and enthusiasm with them from the southern hemisphere, backed by a firm commitment to maintain the Tally’s reputation for good food and drink, plus innovative ideas for entertainment and community involvement to draw in more custom. Live music shows with many of the talented local singer songwriters from the west country, along with live theatre and other events are now regular features.

Working with Tally chef Paul, the new landlords have devised menus that offer both good value and gourmet food. One local commented “We’re all feeling very lucky that the Joiners have taken on the business. They’re a friendly couple, who respect the traditional feel of the place, while bringing in some exciting new ideas.” So why not pop in and meet Kelly and Mike – you’ll be given a very warm welcome from this very friendly couple, who’ll be happy to chat about their plans for this historic pub. Find out more on the Tally Ho website and Facebook page.