Welwyn Hatfield pub gets pickled for charity

A FAMILY-RUN pub will be holding a competition to raise money for charity this weekend – but it could all end in tears...

HUSBAND and wife Jo and Darren Hughes are in something of a pickle.

This weekend their pub, the Robin Hood and Little John in Rabley Heath, will host a contest in aid of charity, but competition is getting fierce.

“We thought it would be a bit of fun,” said Jo, 33.

“But now it’s become a big thing, and everyone is very, very competitive.”

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So what’s the competition that’s getting everyone so excited? Pickled onion tasting, of course.

“It all started when some locals mentioned a pickled onion competition a few years back,” Jo explained. “We thought ‘what a good idea’.”

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It’s the first fundraiser the couple have held since taking over the pub in August, but it certainly won’t be the last.

“We’ve got lots of events planned for this year,” Jo said. “And most of them will be for charity.”

For this Sunday’s event, money raised will go to Help for Heroes, which supports wounded British soldiers returning from battle.

“We’re just trying to get as many people involved as possible,” Jo said.

“We’re new to the area, but it’s a fabulous pub and we’ve already made lots of good friends here.”

It seems Jo and Darren, 35, have plenty to celebrate, not the least the birth of their second daughter, Millie-Jean, just eight weeks ago. Eldest daughter Jessica-Mai is 19 months old.

“We’re a family-run country pub serving good traditional pub food [Darren is a professional chef] and dogs are always welcome,” Jo said.

“We even sell dog treats!”

Entering the pickled onion competition costs �5, and includes free cheese and crackers, courtesy of Knebworth company Cheese Yes Please.

Entry to the event is �3 and also includes cheese and crackers.

Call the pub on 01438 812361 for more information.

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