THE number 13 might be unlucky for some, but not for the new landlords at The Carpenter’s Arms.

David and Helen Chilton took over behind the bar, in South Marston, last week 13 years after leaving their last Arkell’s pub, The Sally Pussey, in Royal Wootton Bassett in 1999.

“We always thought The Carpenters would be a fantastic pub to move to after building up the Sally Pussey,” said Helen.

“By 1999 we’d done twenty years in the licensed trade and wanted a pub that was just a bit smaller but with enough income-generating opportunities.

"The Carpenter’s Arms has busy and good quality letting rooms alongside the pub so we thought it was ideal.”

Unfortunately for the couple, they missed out by a whisker in 1999 to the previous landlord who has just retired from the licensed trade.

Instead they moved to Portugal and spent their time doing up properties. Earlier this year they moved back to the UK and were delighted to discover from pub owners Arkell’s that The Carpenters Arms was about to become available.

“We didn’t think twice about taking it on and we’ve come home to our comfort zone,” said Helen.

Arkell’s Brewery director, George, said: “Unfortunately South Marston isn’t quite as warm as Portugal, but the locals have certainly given David and Helen a very warm welcome since they moved in and we’re delighted to see them back too.”

David and Helen are now planning to build up business at their new pub.

“At the Sally Pussey we introduced one of the first carveries in the area and that initiative is as popular today as it was in 1990,” said David.

“Every pub is individual, so we’ll listen to what our customers want before making too many decisions.

"In the meantime, we’ve lit the fires, made the pub cosy and thrown open our doors to welcome people in.”