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Mum Fulfills Lifelong Dream by Taking on Local Pub

Posted: 20th January 2016

A Maidstone mum has fulfilled a lifelong dream by becoming licensee of her local pub, The Dragoon.
Clare Parslow, 56, officially took over the Shepherd Neame pub in Sandling Road on Tuesday, January 19.  
Clare, who grew up in Maidstone and attended South Borough Girls School in the town, has worked in pubs for more than 20 years, after starting out behind the bar at The Dragoon.
She said:

The Dragoon was the first pub I ever worked in, so it holds a lot of memories for me. Bar work was great while my children were growing up as it was flexible, and I loved the social element of it, particularly meeting new people. I had always dreamed of running my own pub, and now my children are older, aged between 17 and 36, I thought it was the right time to do something for myself. When I heard The Dragoon was available, it seemed the perfect opportunity.

The Dragoon Maidstone Exterior

The Dragoon Maidstone - Geoffrey and Clare Parslow

The pub, which dates back to the 1900s, boasts Maidstone’s only bar billiards table. It is open from 10am to 11pm every day, and offers a selection of light snacks.

Clare said:

It was quite daunting, as although I have worked in pubs for years I have never run one before, but Shepherd Neame provided lots of help and I took courses on areas such as cellar management and health and safety before moving in. My husband Geoffrey has been a huge support, and I have also been made to feel really welcome by the customers, which is lovely. It is amazing to finally be my own boss after all these years.

Shepherd Neame’s director of retail and tenanted operations Nigel Bunting said:

The Dragoon is a great community local and we wish Clare every success in her new role.

For more information visit the pub's website or phone 01622 752620.