James May of The Grand Tour and now a new cooking show called ‘Oh Cook’, has recently purchased the Royal Oak pub in Swallowcliffe, Wiltshire, alongside a silent investor. He posted to Twitter to make his fans aware of the great news.
Now, through his site FoodTribe, sister site to DriveTribe, he’s given us a personal tour of the new pub as it reaches its opening day.
He tells the camera as he walks away from his Tesla Model S, that he’s been told there’s never been a worse time to buy a pub. He explains how the pub he’s bought has been closed for a year, and has never made a profit. On top of that, there are the pub-defeating regulations that have accompanied the pandemic. Yes, it’s really not a great time to invest in such an industry.
Inside he shows us around the pub area, his fancy chairs, and the new manager, Chris. James jokes that he’s from Yorkshire, so they will be offering the services of an interpreter. We then follow him to the dining room which he describes as currently a bit too formal, but his team will be changing this.
Before taking us to the next section of the pub, he passes a sign to the “loos”, explaining how he doesn’t like that term, and asking his fans to come up with something better.
Next up is the Oak Room, “so-called because it’s a room and it’s made of Oak”. To be clear, it’s not a conservatory. Everyone say it together now, it’s not a conservatory. After this, we get a quick shot of the kitchens and a plug for May’s new cookbook.
The pub opens formally next week, but before that, writers of FoodTribe are going to be invited to come and test out the pub themselves. How very lucky!