Werrington’s Blue Bell has undergone something of a revolution this year, but the most significant change yet came last week with the opening of an Italian bistro - The Blue Bella.
It is the brainwave of landlady Helen Warby, who took over the village pub in December last year and set about making changes not just to the look of the place but the way it was run.
You will now find five real ales on tap, as well as a couple of traditional ciders and premium lagers.
“I realised after a couple of months that I needed to do more than drinks, but wanted to offer something different to the other pubs and restaurants in Werrington,” she said.
“ I had the idea that I could turn the back room into an Italian Bistro, I got talking to an Italian chef (Gary Iacano who used to work at Riva in Eye amongst other places) and went for it.
“We opened Monday of last week and it has been going pretty well - we have had nothing but praise.”
Helen, who has plenty of experience of bar work and had long wanted to run her own pub once her children were older, admits it is not the finished article. There are new tables and chairs , for instance, but still some decorative work to do.
The menu at The Blue Bella, which opens Monday to Friday, features pasta, risotto, anti pasti, steaks, fish and lasagna plus a handful of desserts.
“We have tried to keep it simple and realistically priced,” said Helen, who also does roast dinners on a Sunday.
“Pasta dishes cost from £6.95, and apart from the steaks nothing costs more than £10.”