Phil and Norma Kelly, the new landlord and landlady of The Dickin Arms in the Shropshire village of Loppington have had the exteriors of their 300-year old public house transformed with a little help from Sandtex Trade.

When the couple took over the freehold, the pub was, in their words, ‘unloved and unwanted’, but they were determined to make The Dickin the central focus of the village once more. They also knew that to succeed in a small village like Loppington, they would need to draw in passing trade and regular drinkers and diners from the surrounding towns of Ellesmere, Whitchurch, Oswestry and Shrewsbury.

Putting a pub back on the map takes time and effort but Phil and Norma, experienced publicans, knew what was needed. Phil said: “Good ale, good food, good service and a welcoming convivial and atmosphere with cosy log fires are what people want from their village pub and that’s exactly what we offer here at The Dickin. But you also need to make your premises look welcoming on the outside too, to get customers over the threshold in the first place.

“The exteriors were letting the pub down, so we decided it was time for a makeover. We asked Crown Paints for guidance on products to use on a building of this age and character. We didn’t only want to decorate the exteriors; we wanted to protect them too. And because we didn’t want to have to do the job again in a hurry, we also wanted to be sure that the coatings we used would retain their ‘just painted’ appearance for a long time to come.”

Phil added: “Crown Paints recommended a range of Sandtex Trade coatings that would give us long term performance and we brought in a local team of decorators to get the job done. They applied Integrasil mineral paint in a fresh, bright magnolia to all the elevations, obliterating the washed out pale pink from years before. To provide a strong contrast and a high level of protection from dirt at ground level where it was most needed, the first six courses of brickwork were picked out in Classic Stone Gloss in black. We used this same gloss on the cast iron downpipes and then used Flexigloss X-tra for the doors and porch shelters.”

Phil concluded: “Now all the decorating work is complete, The Dickin looks like a different pub altogether. It’s bright, clean and welcoming and no-one could possibly call it ‘unloved’ now. With a little help from Sandtex Trade we’ve created the all important kerb appeal to bring business into the village and at the same time we’ve helped to protect and preserve part of Loppington’s history and heritage.”