Former landlord to serve first drink at new-look Milbank Arms in Barningham
By Trevor Brookes - Editor
THE former landlord of a historic pub has selected the name of the person who will get the first drink when the inn reopens after a major makeover.
Neil Turner, who retired from Barningham's Milbank Arms last year after decades in charge, will be invited back to the grand reopening on Monday, June 3.
He will pull the first pint, or serve up one of his legendary cocktails, to Sam Henderson, whose name was picked out of the hat last week. It follows a charity raffle which raised £2,000 – to be split between the village hall and parish church.
The first prize also included a three course dinner for six people and the second prize, won by Harry Collingwood, was a three course dinner for four people. Meanwhile, the Clarksons of Dyson House won a three course dinner for two people.
Some 1,000 tickets were sold and Ann Orton, from the village hall and church, was delighted.
“That’s a lot of money and we really do need it,” she said.
Sir Edward and Lady Natalie Milbank, who own the Barningham Estate, say the renovation scheme will keep Milbank Arms going in the 21st century. The couple have expanded the tiny bar into the rest of the property.
This will provide more space for customers who will also get a choice of four luxury bedrooms. A kitchen has been built at the back, which will serve local food from the estate including beef, lamb and grouse.
Mr Turner said he was impressed with the new-look, especially the heritage features such as the lighting.
Sir Edward added: “We are running two weeks behind and had planned a soft opening so we could practice before the big launch but we have decided we are going to keep the original date.”