The Wheel and other pubs are reopening this weekend

2nd July

Pubs and restaurants have suffered more than most businesses. Ordered to shut down with little notice, stock had to be thrown away and beer went bad. Some tried delivery or takeaway services, but it was hard.

However, as the 4th of July approaches when pubs can reopen, publicans are cautiously optimistic. We spoke to Sam Maynard from The Wheel in Burwash Weald to find out how they are approaching the ‘new normal’.

“We are being very proactive with the things we are doing to help people feel safe. The whole team is working hard to give our customers the best experience we can. This unexpected time off has given us a chance to make changes and create a much improved pub. For example, the garden is fully gated, redecorated and child safe. There is a new chef and a refreshed menu of pub classics, still keeping local suppliers at the heart of what we do, plus the popular woodfired pizza oven, ” Sam explained.

We also spoke to Julianne Green at JXG Management Solutions Ltd who is advising businesses on what to do to be ready to welcome customers safely.

“The most important thing restaurants and pubs need to think about is the ‘Customer Experience’ – what can customers expect of you when they arrive at your venue and what you will expect of them. Letting people know beforehand what changes you’ve put in place such as pre-booking, hand sanitising stations and how you will manage the track and trace requirements will all lead to an easier re-opening,” advised Julianne.

The Wheel is definitely following this advice. The Heathfield News has put together a summary of how to get the best out of your visit to The Wheel.

  1. Book in advance as numbers are restricted to 50 inside with 2m social distancing. Weather permitting, up to 100 in the garden.
  2. Avoid turning up without a booking – you will be accomodated if there is space but you risk being disappointed
  3. Book via The Wheel website and Facebook page
  4. You will be greeted by a manager at the door who will direct you to your table, explain ordering and if you have not already given your details will ask you to fill out a contact and trace form
  5. Order from your table with waiter service – there will also be an app you can use to order and pay direct from your table. They are trialling this at the moment
  6. There will be protective screens at the bar
  7. No drinking or standing at the bar
  8. Hand sanitiser widely available
Newly refurbished garden and play area ready to welcome customers

The Wheel will be open Wednesday to Sunday, Midday to 11pm. With food served 12-3 and 6 til 9 weekdays, all day Saturday and Midday til 6pm on a Sunday. There is a two course lunch offer at £10.95 and steak night is back on a Thursday. Follow their Facebook page for the latest offers.

“We would like to thank Enterprise Inns who have been extremely supportive and Rother for the assistance grant, plus all of our regulars for their messages of support. We look forward to seeing you very soon,” Sam Maynard, Rosie and the team.