Thursday, 23 September 2021

Landlady happily returns to pub after 12 years

A WOMAN has taken over the Half Moon at Cuxham — 12 years after she left.

A WOMAN has taken over the Half Moon at Cuxham — 12 years after she left.

Jude Bishop, 47, said: “It felt like I was coming home and it felt right. I was really touched and bowled over on the opening night by the number of people who were happy to see me. There were lots of old faces and lots of new ones as well. People are very happy that their local has re-opened.”

Mrs Bishop had been working as a receptionist at the Royal Berkshire Shooting School in Pangbourne but decided that she wanted to return to the licensed trade.

“I realised that I am not cut out for sitting behind a computer,” she said. “I thought I would contact Brakspear and see if there was anything about. When the Half Moon was mentioned and I heard it had been empty it seemed right.”

Mrs Bishop was landlady of the pub between 1998 and 2001 and admits that she left because she became bored and needed a bigger challenge. She moved to the Fox and Hounds in Christmas Common and then to the Rising Sun at Witheridge Hill.

Mrs Bishop says she is not concerned by the Half Moon’s recent chequered history and will enjoy the challenge of turning its fortune around. “I love taking pubs from scratch, when they aren’t doing very well or are about to have a massive change,” she said.

The pub closed in June after a row between tenant Sarah Hall and Brakspear. She was the second tenant in a row to leave within six months of taking over.

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