A HAMPSHIRE country pub will reopen next week under the stewardship of an award-winning restaurateur couple.

Alex and Shekhar Nailwal, who used to run the White Horse in Droxford, have joined forces with Pardeep Sandhu to take over the Roebuck Inn, near wickham.

As previously reported, the pub closed in April due to rising costs, with the trio planning to re-open the site as an Indian gastro-pub.

READ MORE: Hampshire country pub near Wickham to close this week

Shekhar and Alex Nailwal behind the bar at The White Horse Inn, Droxford, in 2022Shekhar and Alex Nailwal behind the bar at The White Horse Inn, Droxford, in 2022

Shekhar said: “It is going to be a mix of English food, but mostly the food is going to be Indian. We are known for our food quality, and this is a site that we always wanted to make more like a mix of Indian and English cuisine. We will do roasts on Sunday, we will do high teas, plus we will do Indian food and takeaways.

“We have a lot of groups of people who have been associated with us for a long time: the Rotary club, ex-policeman group, we sponsor the cricket team in Droxford who come along, all that clientele we’ve got, we want to keep it as a pub that serves Indian food that also mixes in some English.

“Everyone knows us in the community area, and they are very excited. It gives them somewhere where they don’t have to go out to the city, it is a place where they can have nice Indian food and enjoy the garden.”

The Roebuck will have a soft opening on Thursday, July 11, with the mayor of Winchester Cllr Russell Gordon-Smith coming along to perform a ribbon cutting. This will then be followed by a barbeque launch party on July 12 and July 13.

In preparation, the Roebuck has undergone a complete renovation, with Alex and Shekhar saying that they have redone almost every part of the pub, including the parking at the front of the building and the interior.

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The Roebuck InnThe Roebuck Inn (Image: Chris Atkinson)

The couple are also hoping to hold a beer festival at the pub before the end of the summer, and have plans to renovate the boarding rooms in the pub to reopen them as a B&B.

Shekhar continued: “We are looking forward to greeting everyone again. We want to make sure that, when they come in, they can enjoy good quality food.

“We are coming back to the area, so it’s like we’re home, it’s like we are coming back home.

“We are very excited, and we would love people to support us.”