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Thoughts on Our First Year - Mark Woods, Head Chef

Working at The Ploughshare has been both one of the most rewarding, but also the most challenging moments of my career. When I first started, although I had a vast wealth of experience behind me, I had never before set a kitchen up entirely from scratch. It was down to me to decide what equipment I needed, where I might want it, and to come up with a menu that would attract both locals, and others from outside the village, but with the help of my manager, Natalie, together we quickly rose to the challenge. Our first six months proved much more busier than either myself or Natalie could ever have anticipated, and pretty soon our reputation began to spread. We were both made to feel very welcome by everyone in the local community, and often it was a reward just in itself to see the pub so busy and full of happy, smiling customers. After a very successful first Christmas, next came our first Burns Night celebration - which was very well received and seemed to go down really well – and as we entered the new year, myself and Natalie began making all sorts of plans for the future of the pub, including celebrating V.E Day, and various BBQs during the summer months out on the patio. Unfortunately it seems 2020 had other ideas… This year has brought all manner of new challenges that none of us have ever experienced before. Myself and Natalie have had to adapt and change the way we run the business in a way we never could have anticipated, but for us, that is just a new challenge to overcome. What has it been like working at The Ploughshare this past year? Like I said at the beginning, it has been hard work and at times it has been challenging, but it has also been fun. And although you may not be with us to celebrate our first year of opening, I hope you will raise a glass to us, wherever you are, as we welcome in our second year and look forward to you joining us again as soon as all this is over.

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