It’s something of a homecoming for General Manager Isabelle Hendley as she takes on the running of a Shepherd Neame pub just four miles from where she got her first job waitressing.
Twenty-six-year-old Isabelle is the new General Manager of the independent brewer’s Windsor Castle pub in Carshalton, Surrey, which has now reopened its doors to customers.
Dating back to 1860, the traditional pub, just a short walk from Carshalton High Street, has been fully redecorated inside, including its spacious bar and restaurant, while further redecoration to the exterior is planned for the near future.
It has also re-introduced food and is offering a fresh new menu to pair with its selection of great ales and beers. Choose from a delicious selection of light bites and classic dishes with a contemporary and vibrant twist, using locally sourced produce.
An extensive range of drinks is also on offer, from Shepherd Neame’s award-winning range of ales and lagers to premium wines and spirits.
And Isabelle can’t wait to get started. “We really want to make it a community pub again.
“It is a really traditional pub, with a loyal customer base. We want to build on that – I’m so pleased to be here.”
She added of her plans at the pub: “They have been doing a lot of live music here and we definitely want to keep that going.”
The pub has a courtyard area and garden which Isabelle expects to be in full use this summer, and also boasts a popular function space, the Cottage Room, which can accommodate up to 60 guests, with its own bar and facilities.
She started her hospitality career at Shepherd Neame’s Woolpack pub in Banstead, four miles away.
Starting out as a waitress in 2019, she worked her way up to Deputy Manager before leaving last year to take up her first General Manager’s position at the brewer’s Boathouse pub in Yalding, near Maidstone.
“I loved it at The Boathouse, and didn’t intend to leave for years,” she said. “It is really beautiful there in the summer. But then The Windsor Castle became available and for me, it meant going back to my roots. All my family are around here – I’m so excited to be back.”
But it’s not just her family who she is looking forward to seeing, as many of her regulars from The Woolpack are planning to pop in and see her in her new pub, as it is just down the road.
She also met her fiancé, Arturs Peksejevs, who is now the new Head Chef at the Windsor Castle, while working at The Woolpack, and the pair have been working together ever since. They will also be getting married next year.
And the team would not be complete without the couple’s pair of characterful Boston Terriers, Billy and Bonnie, who have been busy making themselves at home!
You can find the Windsor Castle at 378 Carshalton Road, Carshalton, Surrey, SM5 3PT. Visit www.windsorcastlepub.com to find out more or call 020 8669 1191.
About Shepherd Neame
Shepherd Neame has been based in the market town of Faversham, Kent for over 300 years. Perhaps best known for great British classic ales such as Spitfire Amber, which carries the Royal Warrant, its diverse portfolio includes Five Grain Lager, Bear Island East Coast Pale Ale and Bear Island Triple Hopped Lager, and the Whitstable Bay Collection. It also brews international lagers under licence including Samuel Adams Boston Lager and premium Thai lager Singha. The independent family business boasts an award-winning visitor centre and more than 300 pubs and hotels throughout London and the South East, from the historic heart of the City to the Kent coastline.
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