A COUPLE are bucking the trend by breathing new life into a redundant pub.

The landmark Salwey Arms followed the national pattern when it shuts its doors at Woofferton on the Herefordshire and Shropshire border two years ago.

But new owners Hugo and Cilla Lywood hope to bring the former 18th century coaching inn back to its former glory as a hotel, bar and restaurant.

Hugo, a former product developer, and Cilla, with a history in hospitality, say 15 jobs could be created as they embark on a five-month renovation programme with the aim of opening in the summer.

“While retaining all its important and beautiful original features, the renovation plans will inject a modern, fresh and contemporary feel with a few quirky twists that will appeal to a wide audience of locals and visitors alike,” said Hugo.

Cilla added that the pub will keep to the traditions of a country hostelry.

“We plan to introduce bistro and restaurant-style dining, both with an emphasis on quality, seasonal and local ingredients,” she said.

“Other additions include a separate bar with open fires, a traditional smokehouse where fish and local produce can be smoked for use on our own menus and for retail sale, and the re-development of five luxury letting rooms in the main property.”