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Gayton pub supports East Anglia Children's Hospices after Great British Pub Awards lockdown recognition




A West Norfolk village pub has pledged its support for children and young people with life-threatening conditions by donating its prize from a national awards ceremony.

The Crown Inn in Gayton has donated £1,000 to East Anglia Children’s Hospices (EACH) after being announced as the winner of the 'Sheltering the Community' category at the Great British Pub Awards in September.

When the country went into the first lockdown at the end of March, all three of the bedrooms at the pub were given to coronavirus ward staff at the nearby Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

Lisa and Neal Staples, owners of The Crown Inn at Gayton are pictured presenting the cheque for £1,000 to Tina Burnett, regional fundraiser for East Anglia Children's Hospices. Picture: SUBMITTED
Lisa and Neal Staples, owners of The Crown Inn at Gayton are pictured presenting the cheque for £1,000 to Tina Burnett, regional fundraiser for East Anglia Children's Hospices. Picture: SUBMITTED

And as demand for accommodation outstripped supply, a website was developed to help find more rooms in the area, with 30 NHS employees housed in total.

Coca-Cola has provided the funds following The Crown Inn’s recent win, which will go towards supporting EACH.

Lisa Staples, business owner, alongside Neil Staples, at The Crown Inn, said: “We’ve been raising money for East Anglia Children’s Hospices for some time, including by selling our Ravenwood Norfolk children’s story book.

"The adventures of the characters are brought to life at the Ravenwood attraction in the grounds of the pub, which will soon be joined by Ravenwood-themed dining pods. The pods will enhance our customers’ dining experience and help us raise even more for our chosen charity in future.”

As a further gesture of appreciation for The Crown Inn’s commitment to the community during the first lockdown, Coca-Cola will provide up to £10,000 for the team to invest in a business upgrade or a community project over the next six months.

Such funding has also been granted to The White Horse which won the 'Community Mindfulness' category at the Great British Pub Award.

Marvin Tillman who runs the pub presented a cheque of £1,000 to Scotty’s Little Soldiers founder Nikki Scott.

The total value of the Coca-Cola Community Pub Fund – to be shared between all 15 Great British Pub Award winners – is £165,000.

Coca-Cola GB brands director Paul Grace added: “It’s been so inspiring to see how publicans have stepped up to support local people in lockdown, despite many facing hardship themselves. It’s simply in their DNA.

“We’re pleased to be helping the team at The Crown Inn continue to make a difference, and to a cause that’s close to their hearts.

"We want to keep celebrating the role played by pubs in the community – they support so many of us in different ways, and now more than ever, they need our support in return.”



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