Pub’s ‘award-winning’ beer garden ready for summer after £800 makeover

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. Pictured is pub owner for 18 years, Zoe Crowther and her partner John Hartley (inset) who worked to get the garden summer ready during their day off. - Credit: The Fountain / Zoe Crowther and John Hartley

A ‘friendly local’ pub’s award-winning beer garden is now ready to welcome its customers back for the summer months after an £800 makeover. 

The beer garden at The Fountain on Churchgate Street, Soham, now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area than it had previously. 

Some of the greenery includes roses, a beautiful robinia tree and hundreds of annuals giving superb summer colour.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The makeover, that took place during April 20-21, is all thanks to pub owner for 18 years, Zoe Crowther and her partner John Hartley who worked tirelessly for 12.5 hours to get the garden summer ready during their day off. 

John said: “We now have two extremely sore backs and an almost empty wallet, but the pub’s beer garden is now ready to welcome our customers."

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

John says himself and Zoe transform the garden every year to provide a good customer experience but also to show that the couple are doing everything they can for the pub. 

Before Zoe purchased The Fountain, she was looking to buy a pub or a garden centre due to her love for gardening; John now says she’s trying to turn the pub into one! 

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The beer garden’s transformation started on April 20 with Zoe working for two and a half hours on the wall flowers and hanging baskets. 

Then, on April 21, the couple took four separate trips to their local garden centre to pick this year’s plants and by 7:30pm that evening, all 320 of them were planted.

The Fountain's owner Zoe Crowther (L) and her partner John Hartley (R) who worked to get the pub's garden summer ready.

The Fountain's owner Zoe Crowther (L) and her partner John Hartley (R) who worked to get the pub's garden summer ready. - Credit: Zoe Crowther and John Hartley

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

“I’m ex-military and Zoe’s slightly OCD so when we start a job, we really do crack on!,” said John. 

“We always have people turning up to the garden commenting on the abundance of flowers and asking questions on their upkeep and maintenance so it's nice to know people taken an interest in the garden.

“We may not be able to compete on price but we can certainly compete with effort!” 

John believes having a pub means so much more than “just opening the doors”. 

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

“This is my local pub and I used to come here regularly before Zoe took it over - that’s how we met,” he said. 

“We host free live music here, have free pool every Monday, a free jukebox every weekday until 6pm, a quiz every Tuesday at 7:30pm and many more events going on throughout the year.

"We also like to think we are the most dog friendly pub in the area."

The Fountain is open to customers Mondays to Thursdays 2pm-11pm, Fridays 2pm-2am, Saturdays 12pm-2am and Sundays 12pm-11pm. 

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover.

The Fountain's beer garden now has 320 additional plants surrounding the seating area following the £800 makeover. - Credit: The Fountain

The Fountain's Robinia tree in all its glory.

The Fountain's Robinia tree from a previous year in all its glory. - Credit: The Fountain