HIDDEN in the heart of the Northam area in Southampton is one of the oldest pubs in the city.

The Old Farmhouse pub is situated almost next to a railway bridge on Mount Pleasant Road and has a history that dates back to the 17th century.

It is now co-run by Barry Short, 42, and his girlfriend Jo Coxon, 42. The couple took the reins at the pub eight years ago, and they have not changed anything on the inside as the building is Grade II listed and is steeped in history – so much so that there is even a rumour that Oliver Cromwell stayed there in the 1650s.

The garden, which Barry says was once an “overgrown mess”, has seen thousands of pounds worth of improvements which have made it the perfect place for people to enjoy a tipple or two in the sunshine and enjoy the live music that takes place throughout the year.

The best thing about running the pub is the mix of people that pass through its doors, according to Barry.

He said: “I like wide variety of people that come in here, from the regulars, the football fans to the different ethnic communities that come in here for a beer. We love the place and the people that come here.”

One feature of the pub that marks it out from others across the city is its little touches of humour that brighten the place up.

Outside is the traditional pub board which reads “home cooked food, all locally sourced” – then below that are the logos of several well known supermarkets.