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News and Updates

The Crown wins the Camra Most Improved Pub of the Year Award!

It is our pleasure to announce the Mid-Chilterns CAMRA ‘Best Improved Pub of the Year’ for 2024 is The Crown, Ley Hill.

“Shut for just under a third of a year (115 days to be precise), Ley Hill’s last remaining pub was missed sorely by its’ community when doors shut on June 7th 2023.

The Crown’s closure had quickly proceeded that of the village’s only other pub (The Swan) and residents were soon confronted by the prospect of a diminishing community in Ley Hill. The outlook was bleak.

Introducing the heroes of our story, husband and wife team Rob and Sandra Dorsett, a duo with pub custodian pedigree and a strong community ethos. Sandra is quite the local champion, having run boozers and bars across the Mid-Chilterns. This, coupled with Sandra’s born-and-bred ‘Cheshamite’ status and Rob’s hard work and passion meant that The Crown’s future was safe its new operator’s hands.


On Saturday September 30th 2023, doors at The Crown reopened and the Ley Hill community welcomed back once more. In truth, many locals had already crossed the threshold under Sandra and Rob’s guidance, undertaking a community renovation equipped with paint brushes and elbow grease aplenty.

Leading with three cask ales (at least one sourced locally) and a warm welcome, the much-missed trips to The Crown are these days punctuated with tasty hot food, regular events and the return of the village’s much anticipated beer and cider festival. Roaring log fires usher in visitors of all creed, with children and canine friends greeted as much as any community member. Modern offerings such as an extensive alcohol-free drinks range and a well presented function room are the cherry on the cake.”

As one Facebook user put it – “you’re doing such a good job in making The Crown a community hub again.” – the Mid-Chilterns committee could not agree more. Sandra, Rob, thank you for saving a wonderful pub and community space, you’re smashing it!

Congratulations to Sandra, Rob and their wonderful team at The Crown in Ley Hill, your Best Improved Pub of the Year for 2024.


March 2024


It’s hard to believe that we opened the pub on Saturday 30th September and we have been here nearly six months! It has been quite a ride but one we have loved.


We have changed our original menu in that time and have decided to do this every three months to keep it fresh. We have also changed our Monday and Tuesday offerings from the platters to a shorter menu and this has proved very popular with bookings steadily increasing. Wallet Watcher Wednesdays, our two courses for £12.00, is still very popular and alongside this we run our Wednesday to Saturday menu. Sunday lunches are also very popular and we regrettably do have to turn people away just because we don’t have enough space …. roll on the warmer weather when guests can sit outside. With Mother’s Day fast approaching we are now fully booked.


Looking forward to Easter weekend, on Saturday 30th March we have music from The Numbers playing from 8.30pm, Easter Sunday is starting to book up so if you would like a table please give us a call. On Easter Monday 1st April we are holding a Charity Dog Show in aid of Stokenchurch Dog Rescue. Chesvale Dog Training Club are very kindly organising this event for us and we look forward to welcoming all your dogs along, further details will be available in the next couple of weeks.


On Saturday 27th April we have a 100,000 point charity darts challenge in aid of the Air Ambulance. This will start at 10am and the aim is to throw solidly for 12 hours. If you are interested in taking part please let us know and we can put you in touch with the organiser, Martin Cartledge. Please come and support this worthwhile charity as none of us know when we might need them.


Advance dates for your diary, we have a Mini Music and Beer Festival on Saturday 25th May with tribute acts performing; Adele, Neil Diamond, Tom Jones and Elvis are all participating. This will be an outside event so here’s hoping the weather is kind to us! Also the Leyhill Music and Beer Festival will be back on August Bank Holiday, Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th.


May we take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support throughout what can be really tough months for pubs, we have been very fortunate and with your help have weathered these two months.


We look forward to seeing you soon!


Sandra and Rob

November 2023


We have reopened The Crown and in our first month business has been brisk. Firstly we have to thank our many volunteers who came and cleaned, painted, restocked, upholstered furniture, fetched and carried from our house and generally lent their support, we are extremely grateful to you. It has been great to see many familiar faces and to welcome back those who haven’t been to the pub recently, your support is greatly appreciated. If you haven’t managed to pop in yet, we look forward to seeing you when you can!

We are serving food 7 days a week (see website for timings). Monday and Tuesday are chef’s days off so we offer our platters with a choice of cheese, seafood or charcuterie. We run full menu from Wednesday to Saturday with a choice of roast meats on a Sunday along with some pub classics should you not want a roast. Our Wallet Watcher Wednesday has been a great success – 2 courses (main and dessert) off a specially designed menu for £12.00, has seen the pub packed. We advise booking wherever possible.

We appreciate that our opening times have left a few people questioning our decision so perhaps we should explain. We are open from 11am to 9pm Monday to Thursday, 11am to 11pm Friday and Saturday and 12 to 6pm on a Sunday. We are mindful of the winter fuel bills landing on not just us but everyone and unfortunately cannot keep the pub open for only a handful of people – the figures just don’t add up. We have taken the decision to close early on a Sunday to give us time at home. Rob is still continuing to work full time and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. We hope you understand that we want just one night off a week to get ready for the new working week and as this is an infant business would rather not leave staff on site when we are not around.


Looking to the immediate future we are getting ready for Christmas and our menu is out in the pub and will be online later this week. We are taking bookings from Monday 4th December to Friday 22nd December (excluding Sundays). This must be pre ordered in advance. We also have traditional Christmas entertainment on Sunday 17th December at 4.30pm with carol singers and readings from The Luvvies. On Saturday 23rd December we have a Christmas dog walk followed by bacon rolls, mulled wine and hot chocolate starting at 10am (approximately ¾ hour) led by Holly Byfield and Nettle. We will be open on Christmas Day for drinks 11am to 2pm only. Our Christmas opening times will be out shortly.


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