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27 August 2019

Work is set to start* on a £750,000 revamp of The Cock Horse in Cherwell Heights, which will reopen the pub after an eight-month closure and create 20 new jobs. The project is being undertaken by Heineken-owned Star Pubs & Bars and Banbury residents, father and son team Clive Coules and Matthew Cummings-Coules, who also run The Wine Vaults on Parsons Street.

The refurbishment is expected to take nine weeks with the pub scheduled to reopen in early November.

The investment will transform Cherwell Heights’ only pub from a tired, under-used local into a great quality family-friendly pub serving excellent food, renaming it The Chatsworth to mark its new direction. “Our aim is to literally turn the pub round and we’re moving the entrance from Teal Close to Chatsworth Drive – hence the new name. It will be like a different pub when we’ve finished, nothing will be untouched. The design will enable The Chatsworth to cater for the whole community and a wide range of occasions whether it’s a morning coffee, a pub lunch, a celebration dinner or evening drinks,” says Clive.

Outside work will completely change the pub’s appearance with a new gabled entrance, cedar cladding, signage and lighting. The pub’s overgrown garden will be landscaped and made into a stunning feature that can be enjoyed year-round, whatever the weather. The plans include a terrace with covers and festoon lighting, seating for over 200, beautiful planting and children’s play equipment.

The makeover will give The Chatsworth a stylish, comfortable and welcoming feel throughout and add an extension housing a kitchen and a 60 cover dining area. An all-day menu will focus on pub classics as well as more unusual specials and use locally sourced ingredients from suppliers around Banbury such as Betts Butchers.   In addition to space for dining, there will be a large bar serving everything from craft beer to cocktails, a sports zone complete with pool, darts and a state-of-the-art AV system screening BT and Sky sports and a coffee bar with soft seating and sofas. The pub will open from 9am for take out and drink in barista-quality coffee as well as pastries and breakfast. The needs of local business people and those working from home will be met with high speed broadband, USB ports and multiple charging points. 

Clive and Matthew hope to make The Chatsworth a focal point of Cherwell Heights’ life. As well as opening the pub up as a meeting place for local groups and good causes, they plan a new programme of events such as quizzes, family fun days and acoustic music, and will cater for functions.

Clive first spotted The Cock Horse when his children attended the neighbouring primary school and has been interested in running it ever since. “Cherwell Heights is crying out for a great local where people can come together. I’ve had my eye on the pub for over 15 years and when it became available I didn’t hesitate to take it on. We’ve got lots of friends in Cherwell Heights and we’ve canvassed them and other residents to find out what they want and to get their ideas and approval of the pub’s name. We want to make The Chatsworth a hub of the community and an asset that they feel proud of. We’re not doing it by halves; we’re committed to giving people the quality and style they’ve had to go into town to find on their doorsteps in Cherwell Heights.”

Comments Star Pubs & Bars operations director Neil Convery: We’re delighted to be joining forces with Clive and Matthew to revive The Chatsworth and give Cherwell Heights a fantastic local. Clive and Matthew have got an outstanding track record at The Wine Vaults, which is one of the town’s most popular pubs, and as Banbury residents and licensees they’ve got a great knowledge of the area and what people want.”

* Work starts on 2nd September