Business as usual despite car crashing into historic Marsh pub.
The landlord of The Cinque Port Arms has vowed they will remain open despite a horrendous incident of a man allegedly driving his car directly into the pub. The unnamed man was reported to have driven at speed towards bystanders outside the public house in New Romney High Street.
The incident occurred shortly before 10pm on Friday 24 November after eyewitness reports of a silver Vauxhall Corsa speeding across the High Street clipping one bystander standing outside and throwing him across the bonnet, before slamming into the front entrance of the 16th Century pub.
Two other customers sustained injuries not thought to be life threatening whilst the driver was said to be in a serious condition.
In a statement from Kevin Gibbons and Sharon Epps, the owners of the Cinque Ports Arms said: “At around 21:30 on Friday 24th November 2017, a man in his twenties, unknown to us was escorted off the premises. He subsequently got into his car and deliberately drove at the pedestrians outside the pub, hitting the front of the pub subsequently causing injuries to some of our patrons & staff. We have been asked by the Police to make no further statement relating to the driver or the incident at this point as it could jeopardise any future Police investigation. However, we would like to take this opportunity to thank our staff who not only remained calm but acted in a highly professional manner to ensure that our customers and children above the pub were safely evacuated while assisting the emergency services.We would also like to thank the emergency services for their rapid response and the service they provided.We have had builders working throughout the night to make the pub structurally safe and will be carrying on with business as usual sometime today. The Cinque Ports Arms is a Community Pub in the heart of New Romney that will not tolerate inappropriate behaviour. This is a one-off incident and we would like to reassure our Customers that your comfort, safety and enjoyment will continue to be our priority.”
Kent fire and rescue issued a statement saying: “Kent Fire and Rescue Service was called to a car that had crashed into a pub in High Street, New Romney. Firefighters worked with other emergency services at the scene and together with paramedics assessed the driver of the vehicle, a man in his late 20s, before he was cut free by crews using hydraulic cutting gear. The driver was transferred to an ambulance and taken to hospital. Firefighters also assisted paramedics in treating three other male casualties at the scene. Crews made the scene safe.”
One customer at the scene told our reporter: “One of the security staff asked a man to leave after he started getting boisterous, only for the same person to drive off and then come back later driving his car at about 50MpH into the front door of the pub.”
Another witness who asked not to named, said: “We were with a group of friends sat just inside the door of the pub when there was a huge bang, it was like a bomb went off, and there was dust and wreckage everywhere.”
This is the third time in less than 2 years that the pub has had a vehicle collide into it causing structural damage. On the first occasion, a driver mounted the pavement at speed and careered through one of the windows of the pub on the very day that the new owners took over the building. 12 months later the driver of a car which had been parked in the car park opposite accidently drove through the car park wall, crossing the busy high street coming to rest embedded in the front of the pub.
With recent reports of cars being used in terror attacks the incident has created national media interest. The Looker was first on the scene and has been inundated with enquiries.
The popular pub was recently put up for sale for £1.2million by the owners who have previously carried out major refurbishments and added a large extension.