Church Inn recognised!

The-ChurchpoemWe are delighted to announce that our lovely Church Inn in Mobberley has been recognised as the UK’s ‘New Pub of the Year 2014-15’ by the Good Pub Guide!

We re-opened the Church Inn just over a year ago following major restoration and refurbishment works. The Church Inn dates back to at least 1753 and we are proud of its standing in the village of Mobberley. There is plenty of history associated with the pub and this award recognises the efforts of many people.

We have to mention our landlord Simon, Head Chef Lloyd and the team who have endless enthusiasm and passion for the business and try their best at all times. Our customers who have supported the pub so well in its first year since re-opening. Our owners Tim and Mary who, despite owning the Bulls Head also in Mobberley, had the vision and courage to see the opportunity for a differentiated pub style so close to their already award winning Bulls Head and last but by no means least all our wonderful suppliers who have helped us achieve this award.

The award is for all the people associated with the Church Inn to celebrate, enjoy and raise a glass to.

Well done everyone!!!


Chester Chronicle published August 4th 2014

gin200A Cheshire pub has welcomed the 200th gin to its record-breaking collection.

The arrival of the 200th gin at The Cholmondeley Arms, near Malpas, marked the end of a week-long ‘Gin Fest’ and the third anniversary of the pub’s refurbishment and opening.

Tim Bird and Mary McLaughlin opened the pub in 2011 with 40 gins and established a reputation for stocking a collection of some of the best and most unusual gins in the country.

The 200th gin to be unveiled was a newly launched Burleigh’s Gin.

The new gin arrived at the pub in a helicoptor, where it was welcomed by hundreds of guests and locals celebrating the culmination of ‘Gin Fest’, which saw gin tastings, a collection of sports and vintage cars, live music and a pop-up gin bar in the pub’s garden.

Tim Bird, owner of the Cholmondeley Arms, said: “It was a fantastic festival of gin at the weekend.

“We’re delighted to welcome the 200th gin to our collection and intend to keep building on this in the years to come.”

The pub continues to challenge brand owners and customers to ‘bring a gin to the Inn’ to see if they have it in stock.

Cheshire Cat Pubs and Bars buys in Punch and Wellington freeholds:

Cheshire Cat Pubs and Bars, led by Tim Bird and Mary McLaughlin, has acquired the freehold of their Bulls Head Pub from Punch Taverns and also bought the freehold of The Roebuck Inn from Wellington Pub Company, situated opposite The Bulls Head in Mill Lane, Mobberley in Cheshire.

Bird told Propel: “It has been exciting doing the two deals at the same time. We have operated The Bulls Head for four years on a lease with Punch Taverns and have built the pub up after carrying out a major refurbishment. We are sure Punch is pleased with the deal but we are delighted to have paid 4.8x Ebitda for a pub we cherish. As for The Roebuck Inn, this pub has been closed for well over a year. It sits straight opposite The Bulls Head in Mill Lane, Mobberley. We were tired of looking across the lane and seeing The Roebuck deteriorate and knew if the deal was right we would go for it. We will hopefully develop bedrooms and a small bistro as well as the barns and gardens. It is the first time in history (some 200+ years or more) that the two pubs are under single ownership. Our bank, HSBC, have been hugely supportive with the two investments and we continue to work very closely with it. In a year of consolidation we had said that we wouldn’t necessarily be acquiring a pub this financial year but this opportunity was a rare one and we had to take it.”

The deal means Cheshire Cat Pubs and Bars now own three freeholds and two 25-year leasehold pubs in Cheshire. Meanwhile, its award-winning Cholmondeley Arms, situated on Lord Cholmondeley’s estate, celebrates its claim to fame as the biggest Gin Palace in the north west next week when it holds its first ‘Annual Gin Fest ’. Gin brand owners are asked to visit to check if they are listed in its collection of 200 gins.

Bird added: “If they aren’t listed then we challenge them to bring their ‘Gin to the Inn’ on Saturday 19 July.”

Laura Trott’s perfect weekend


LAURA TROTT became a household name by scooping two gold medals at her first Olympic Games in London in 2012. Here she opens up about her weekends and obsession for EastEnders.

Track and road cyclist Laura Trott OBE began her cycling career at the age of eight.

Laura_CraigforthA four-time world team pursuit champion, she became a household name by scooping two gold medals at her first Olympic Games in London in 2012. More recently, she was crowned women’s 2014 British Cycling Road champion. Laura, 22, will take part in the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow next week. She lives in Stockport with her Olympic gold-winning cyclist boyfriend Jason Kenny.

“I train six days a week and it’s pretty intense, with early starts and late finishes. So when I do have a rest weekend, I like to put my feet up. On Friday nights, Jason will cook. He’s not bad in the kitchen, although more often than not we’ll have his staple pasta and tuna dish. Then we’ll watch EastEnders – I’m obsessed and can’t miss an episode!

“I like to be in bed by 10pm. I get grumpy if I haven’t had a good 10-hour sleep. In an ideal world I’d have a lie-in, but our two dogs never allow us to sleep late. They’re gorgeous little sproodles [a cross between a springer spaniel and a poodle] called Sprolo and Pringle and they’re yapping and full of energy by 8am. So Jason and I will go for a cycle and they’ll run alongside us around the country lanes near where we live.

“In the afternoon, we’ll go over to Jason’s parents’ house. They’ll make us bacon sandwiches for lunch and we’ll stay for the whole afternoon. His dad makes a mean curry for dinner too and we’ll watch TV. I love the Outnumbered box set, I find it hilarious.

“Sunday is a lazy day. We’ll spend most of the morning in our pyjamas, before taking the dogs for a walk and then head over to our favourite pub, The Church Inn, Mobberley, for a roast lunch. Jason loves motor racing, so if there’s a Grand Prix on TV we have to be back in time to watch it. In the evening, we’ll relax with a film, but there are always arguments. Jason loves action films – I’d rather watch a romantic comedy. Then it’s off to bed, as we’ll both be up at the crack of dawn for training.

“I’ve a lot on at the moment, with the Commonwealth Games, and I’m taking part in the Prudential RideLondon event in August, too.”


win2The Three Greyhounds Inn in Allostock has beaten off competition from 1300 other pubs to be named Best Food Pub in national awards run by Heineken owned Star Pubs & Bars this week.

Noting the pub’s busy car park, the judges were impressed by how quickly owners Tim Bird and Mary McLaughlin had established the pub as a great place to eat within just a year of re-opening. Describing it as a ‘shining light’, they also singled out the distinctive menu with its focus on food from British farms.

Indeed it was the opportunity to offer food at the Three Greyhounds Inn that attracted Tim and Mary to take on the pub and to invest £250,000 restoring it into a beautiful traditional pub serving excellent locally sourced food. “The pub had been shut for four months and was in a sad state when we first saw it,” recalls Tim. “But it had real character and as the only pub in the Allostock area was crying out for some TLC and to be turned back into a pub that the local community could be proud of.”

The 300-year-old pub’s history as a farm inspired Tim and Mary with the menu theme. The menu is a celebration of food from British farms with as much produce as possible from meat and vegetables to ice cream and chutney coming from Cheshire farms. For an added twist, the pub also specialises in British farm cheeses and offers a choice of eight brandies produced on a Somerset farm.

“We’ve been surprised and delighted by the variety of wonderful food being produced on Cheshire farms, from chocolate to asparagus, the quality is excellent,” says Tim.

The Three Greyhounds landlord James Griffiths and head chef Craig Wainwright received the coveted award at a gala celebration night from snooker champion John Parrott. “We’re humbled but very proud to have been selected to win the award. We didn’t seek the nomination which made winning a great surprise and a real boost for our 25 staff and 5 chefs. Some people think that rundown pubs are a lost cause, this award helps us prove there will always be a place for a well-cared for traditional community local.”

Tim and Mary are not resting on their laurels after their win, with plans for a private dining room, guest bedrooms and a regular farmers market at the Three Greyhounds Inn on the cards.

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