T MAY have had a reputation as ‘rough’ in the past, but new faces in charge behind the bar at a Hampshire pub have been determined to change that.

Landlady Kat Poore and Shaun Smith have taken the helm at The Arrow in Boyatt Wood and say they have already brought people back to the pub who had not stepped foot in it for 25 years.

And the changes they have made to give the pub a more family feel they say is already reaping rewards.

Locals, some of whom have been coming for more than 30 years, say the pub’s name comes from a yacht called the Arrow, which competed in the first America’s Cup in 1851, and that the pub was established in 1977 with the birth of the new Boyatt Wood estate.

“We’re trying to get rid of the reputation it had,” said Kat, 38.

“It’s always been known to be a very rough pub, a bloke pub.”

Kat, who has worked part-time at a number of venues including The George in Fair Oak and the Irish Club in Eastleigh, came to the pub as a supervisor in April and took over with partner Shaun, 30, when the previous manager left four months ago.

They wanted to change the pub’s image and have introduced an eating area and function room, brought in a couple of sofas where people can relax.

The menu has been revamped, with child-friendly portion options, and Kat hopes to bring in a projector screen for ahead of football’s European Championship next year.

The pub, off Shakespeare Road, has a pool table and a pub darts team.

But under the new management table football has taken off with the pub now organising tournaments and encouraging beginners to have a go with expertise on hand from a member of the Hampshire football table team.

The pub has also encouraged sports teams playing at the nearby Crestwood College facilities to come in after practice.

The pub, which is owned by Meet and Greet Ltd, also holds a Rockabilly Day once a month with rock and roll music, with the next one set for Sunday.

“The atmosphere is so different now,” said Kat, who added that profits are up at the pub as a result.

“People are bringing their children back in the pub which they never would have done before.

“Women have started coming back in the evening.

Kat said: “The atmosphere of the pub has managed to change so it’s not such a rough pub.

“We have got people who refused to come for 25 years starting to come back.”

The pub’s cheapest beer is £3.30 and the cheapest wine is £4.85 for a 250ml glass.