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Josh and Kay Reid have been Landlord and Landlady of The Chequers since 1991. The Chequers (next to the theatre) was one of a group of Allied Domecq pubs sold off to Fullers in compliance with the now-infamous Beer Orders. Always a popular town pub with the cognoscenti in Chipping Norton, the pub, in the 3 years prior to its sale to Fullers had a somewhat chequered (!) history, running through a series of licensees in comparatively short order. Following the untimely death of the popular Peter Heritage, who with his wife Rosemary, had taken the pub after their employer had retired from the business. Some changes were made to the interior at that time, and the tenancy was taken over by Allen Drage - still resident in Chipping Norton and a well-known postman. Allen was followed within a short time by Frank Frangiamore, who locals recall had a somewhat unfortunate and abortive experience in the barn, consequent to which the pub closed for some nine months - by this time the interior had been painted a uniform clinical white, and the customer base had declined to what could only be described as the dedicated local and the morbidly curious. With Fullers came great changes. The pub was extensively altered internally, with the removal of some part walls, the opening of old fireplaces (for winter use), previously non-public rooms and considerable redecoration. This redecoration was the subject of much local speculation, but Fullers managed a magnificent job, and succeeded in making the pub appear as if its decor was the result of a long period of use. When it did eventually reopen, with Josh and Kay in place, it was immediately obvious that it was a welcoming pub, and it rapidly became a major meeting place for locals. It's probably the most universally popular pub in the town. The Chequers operates a 16-cover restaurant in the back room, as well as offering bar meals (with menus changing daily) in the main bar areas. The cuisine is predominantly Thai, and is overseen by Kay, who has even been to Thailand on extended courses to ensure the validity of their menus. Quiz teams have been popular and successful, competing in the Oxford Mail's quizzes. Other more traditional pub games are available. The Chequers has the full range of Fullers' cask-conditioned beers (and for those who insist on fizzy pop, the nitro-keg) as well as Golden Pride in bottles. Beer Garden, no music.
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Cotswold View Guest House
Nether Westcote, Chipping Norton
Oxfordshire, OX7 6SD.