A Wiltshire family is celebrating seven decades of running a town centre pub.

Natalie Burt, known to many as Nat, has been a staple of The Pelican Inn, at Devizes Market Place, since her parents Frank and Lillian Goodman took on the tenancy in 1954.

Now 70 years later she still works full time behind the bar, alongside her daughter Sarah-Jane Burt, granddaughters Natasha and Zoe, and Sarah-Jane’s partner David Szymanski.

Sarah-Jane said her mum continues to work at the pub every day and is an “incredible” inspiration for the rest of the family.

She said: “My mum is a Legend in every sense of the word.  She has been a role model for several generations now and a friend to everyone.

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The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Nat Burt at The Pelican InnNat Burt at The Pelican Inn (Image: Sarah-Jane Burt)

“She always says it has been a gift and an honour to be a part of so many people’s lives, through not only the good times but also the bad.”

Nat first took over the Pelican when her mother died in 1987, after years of working in the bar and delivering bowls of hot water to lodgers.

She took on the pub with her husband and made considerable changes, including opening up the bar areas and introducing regular live music and discos.

The venue boasted four darts teams, two pools teams, and a football team, something Sarah-Janes said contributed to a strong “community feel”.

The mother and daughter duo continue to run The Pelican with the help of their family and survived the challenges of the pandemic by offering takeaway food and accommodation for key workers.

Sarah-Jane said the pub prides itself on “great beers, great food and beautiful accommodation”.

Throughout the changes of the last 70 years Nat has been a constant welcoming face for both staff and customers.

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The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: The Pelican InnThe Pelican Inn (Image: Sarah-Jane Burt)

Sarah-Jane added: “Times have changed a great deal with hospitality having to work ever harder to succeed and she is a firm believer that you must move with those times in order to succeed.

“She has always said running a pub is a way of life. You can't count the hours you have worked, when you start doing that it's time to move on.

“Everyone says she is the most welcoming person you could ever meet, nothing is too much trouble and she treats everyone the same. 

“Our front door is a golden door, you never know who may walk in.”