Licensee of The Bell Inn Receives Chair’s Award from Somerset Council

Caroline Halfhide, licensee of The Bell Inn in Ash has been recognised for her outstanding work within her local community.

Caroline has been Licensee of The Bell Inn in Ash for 14 years and has not only been running the busy local pub but extending her work to support residents within the Martock area. Caroline’s previous work during the pandemic saw her turn the pub into a local village shop, where every order was delivered directly to residents. This not only offered a local food essential service but offered risk free shopping at a time when individuals were terrified to leave their homes. She is a Treasurer and PCC member of the Village Church (Holy Trinity), Treasurer and Trustee for Ash Village Hall and more recently has been elected to Ash Parish Council. Caroline has also undertaken various tasks such as writing the village newsletter and organising annual cricket events.

For her outstanding efforts, Caroline also received an MBE last year for ‘Services to the Community’ in Martock during the response to Covid-19 and has now been recognised by Somerset Council. She has received The Chair’s Award for Service to the Community 2021, which recognises her continual work towards supporting and brining the people of Martock and the surrounding area together as well as the different positions she holds.

Caroline Halfhide, Licensee of the Bell Inn, said: “The community of Ash is a big part of my life whether it be working at the pub with my amazing team or with the lovely team at the village hall. I thoroughly enjoy all areas of work I do, and it is great to serve the others in more than one way. My work within the community allows me to try and make a difference as well as provide support for anyone who needs it.

“I feel very humbled to have received an MBE and now the Chair’s Award from Somerset Council for my work supporting others. Never did I think I would receive either of these awards, but I am very proud.”

Nick Light, Managing Director of Stonegate Pub Partners, said: “We are immensely proud at Stonegate of Caroline’s achievements and it’s terrific news that her dedication and commitment to her local community over many years has been formally recognised. In particular her work during the pandemic has made a real difference to local residents.”