The Wickham Arms - plans for the future

The management of the Wickham Arms have very courteously posted a detailed description of their plans to improve the pub on this thread about changes to their garden wall.

Running a successful pub in a quiet street in the midst of a recession which is contributing to the mass closure of pubs up and down the country is no easy task. It must be a tough balancing act to keep loyal customers happy while appealing to the wider community. The Wickham Arms has - in our view - pulled it off pretty well. It remains an authentic local boozer, with plenty of character and a dedicated clientele. But on many nights, when it hosts music and pub quizzes, the place is heaving, pulling in a broad cross-section of the local community. The staff have always provided a warm welcome and we've had some great nights there - including our first-ever Brockely Central drinks.

However, we've always felt there was room for improvement - some changes that could turn a good pub in to a great one and the Wickham Arms team has been working hard for two years to make improvements.

So we're delighted to learn that incremental changes are planned, which will broaden its appeal and make it a better asset for the community. Here's what they say:

Some time back we did lay down a series of plans for changing the pub, and which the authors of this site gave us the opportunity to present to you. Sadly, due to the unexpected financial crisis, we could not undertake such a costly conversion - one which many of you posting here no doubt would have loved to have seen. But, much as we would have wished to have carried out these 'improvements', some of our regular customers also had views that needed to be taken into consideration.

This, added with financial constraints, proved quite a challenge. In fact we set about finding unique ways to make the experience at the Wickham more enjoyable. (Yes, we do think of such concerns as your successful enjoyment is our success too.) However, we would like to assure you that the change was only undertaken in order to open up the garden area to families and other patrons who may wish to use it, and yet did not know of its existence as signage is often ignored.

Also, please be reassured, planning considerations are in hand to resolve this issue.

Beside the above, there are more changes to follow and we hope that you will agree that these will enhance the garden area and the pub itself.

These are:

1) the children's sandpit & playground area will be completed by Monday 18 May, weather permitting.
2) Play bark chipping will be laid down in certain areas.
3) New bedding plants will be laid and viewed from the roadside.
4) The smoking area will be decked with new plants to make this a happier outdoor experience for smokers.

These are the kind of small-scale improvements which should keep everyone happy.