Prince Consort, Netley Abbey

Pepe and Karen Solis Velasco

Pepe and Karen Solis Velasco

First published in What's On Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Eastleigh Chief Reporter

A SNAZZY new look, new landlords and – crucially – some delicious pies.

The fresh, modern interior is indicative of the changes made at the Prince Consort since Pepe Solis and his wife Karen took up the reins some three months ago.

The couple have breathed new life in to the watering hole, which sits in the heart of Neltey Abbey’s community.

Pepe, who heralds from Spain, has lived in Hampshire for 25 years and met his wife in the village when the pair were working at a restaurant.

Now they are embarking on a new challenge – and the signs are promising. Just weeks ago they were handed three stars by the Enjoy England tourism body.

As well as providing accommodation and a function area, Karen’s home cooking is proving a hit with villagers.

Her pies have been a roaring success and she soon hopes to have a whole page on the menu dedicated to her speciality.

“We saw real potential in the place and thought why not give it a go – and we don’t regret it at all,” said Pepe.

“We have completely redecorated the place – it used to be black and red inside.

“All the food is home made and the prices are reasonable.

“So far, it is going really well.”

The refurbished pub is receiving plenty of custom from the staff and residents of nearby Malmesbury Court housing block.

Christmas is set to be an important period at the Grade II listed pub, with bookings for disco nights and dinners already mounting up.

A special fancy dress Rat Pack-themed event is also being planned for New Year’s Eve.

Cheapest wine: Blush Pinot Grigot at £2.50 a glass Cheapest beer: Ringwood Best at £2.80 a pint.

Victoria Road, Netley Abbey, Southampton, SO31 5DQ. Tel: 023 8045 2676

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