The Tally Ho pub in Winchburgh welcomes drinkers to its beer garden
Winchburgh’s only pub has welcomed back village drinkers as they reopened on Monday with a host of new safety measures in place and an extended outdoor seating area as beer gardens opened across Edinburgh the Lothians.
Licensees Yvonne, who is currently the British Masters Champion Weightlifter 64kg, and Trevor Spence have spent lockdown making the changes to be ready to reopen The Tally Ho pub as soon as restrictions eased.
To ensure social distancing, the garden now seats 115, which includes 70 new chairs and two marquees. The tables are positioned so that customers in different groups can still socialise together plus there’s a dedicated area for older customers and those feeling more cautious.
The couple have taken all precautions inside as well, even installing special door handles that sanitise people’s hands upon entry.
Customers are greeted at the door and the new procedures are explained to them including a one-way system, table service using a mobile Perspex screen and a traffic light scheme for the toilets. Whilst contactless payment and ordering via an app is encouraged, the pub still accepts cash and takes pen and paper orders for those without phones.
The Spences took over The Tally Ho – their first pub – in August last year following a £400,000 refurbishment with Star Pubs and Bars.
When lockdown came, they wasted no time in delivering free hot meals to vulnerable people initially struggling to get food. The duo have been buoyed by the community’s support throughout the closure. Regulars volunteered to help with a new takeaway service that has contributed to keeping the pub afloat.
Trevor said: “We’ve missed our regulars and feel excited to be bringing some normality back to people’s lives again. Whilst we’ve put some new measures in place, the character of The Tally hasn’t changed and customers will get the same warm welcome.
“We can’t thank the community enough for the support they’ve given us throughout this difficult time. We can’t wait to reopen and, judging from all the good wishes we’ve received, people are keen to come back, get a proper pint and meet up. As soon as we opened up table reservations, they started flying in, and we were booked out for Saturday 11 July within hours.”
Tom Reilly, Star Pubs and Bars’ area manager added: “Yvonne and Trevor have put their all into The Tally Ho and done everything they can to look after their customers. They’ve done a fantastic job and we wish them all the best.”