IT’S all change at The Woods End at Bramerton. This historic pub re-opened just over a week ago with a complete new look. In fact it’s now “Water’s Edge, Woods End” with new leaseholder Lee Webb determined to throw off a bad reputation – especially online. That’s the power of Tripadvisor: that’s the tyranny of Tripadvisor some would say.
The master plan, says Lee, is to make the Water’s Edge a “destination restaurant” with the main market being the thousands of people down the road in Norwich. Wherryman’s Way walkers will rejoice that it’s to become an all-day venue too. He’s not there yet, but the plan is for an 8am start with breakfast, coffee and Danish pastries available for hungry ramblers.
And while he’s a leaseholder, he stresses that he pays rent to a property management company rather than a pub chain. In other words he’s not tied, drinks-wise. Real ale fans are offered Greene King IPA, Old Speckled Hen and Woodforde’s Wherry. On the menu; starters of leek and potato soup, crispy pork belly, pan-seared queen scallops, salmon gravadlax and icelandic prawns; the mains are more crispy pork belly, crispy chilli beef, pan-seared sea bass and char-grilled sirloin steak. Starters are £5 or £6. Mains vary from £8.95 to £18.95.
Above all, he stresses, he wants to be reliable. Always open, seven days a week, without the annoying hand-written “Due to Family Illness…” notes that have been known here in the past.
So can he make a go of it? Maybe it’s because I’ve written so many of these New Dawn pieces that I’ve grown a bit more world-weary with each one. Lee’s answer though, is resolutely upbeat. “I’m going to bring service back to the industry,” he says. “If you’re going to have to keep getting up to get served you might as well be at home. We’ll come to you and we’ll look after you.”
There’s been no big launch yet. He’s been happy to let people find him so far. But 130 covers for Mothering Sunday wasn’t bad for Day Three. Good luck to you, Sir.