July 8, 2013 by Whispering Smith
Whispering Smith published in the Littlehampton Gazette June 28 2013
I WAS the first customer through the doors and had the first pint pulled by the landlord at the newly opened Steam Packet public house in River Road, a pub with a superb aspect and conveniently close by the footbridge leading to the west bank of the river. And an excellent pint it was. The Packet was built around 1865, about the same time as the railway came to LA – several of the original drawings of that old building will be going on display in the pub – and has been closed for nearly five years and appeared to be a dead duck. However along came Mark Pester, a man with considerable experience in running public houses and one with a determination to succeed. The interior and exterior have been delightfully refurbished and three holiday lets tastefully erected to the rear of the building, they blend in so well in fact that you cannot see the join! Two outside sheltered areas, from either the sun or the rain, have been provided for the fresh air lovers and the smokers. Judging by the tasty grub on offer on opening day, they have a great chef and an interesting menu, especially appealing is the offer of afternoon cream teas. Food is currently served from Tuesday to Sunday, lunchtimes and each evening with the exception of Sunday evening, with a Sunday roast being a particular favourite all over town. I am looking forward to a meal there just as soon as I can spare a few Weightwatcher points. It really is pleasing to welcome any new business to LA and such enterprises must be given every encouragement by all concerned within the local authority. As The Locomotive is reduced to a pile of rubble and happy memories it is even more encouraging to see an old historic public house given a new lease of life. That attractive little area of LA makes a great excuse for an evening’s walk along our lovely river a stroll marred, in my opinion, only by the rust retardant red paint of the footbridge. Let’s go back to green!
WONDER where my cat spends her nights these days, certainly not at home with me much anymore, going off with that ginger tom again I guess…