Interview: Brian Whiting, MD Whiting and Hammond

PUBLISHED: 12:14 23 June 2020 | UPDATED: 12:14 23 June 2020

Brian Whiting, MD of Whiting and Hammond, has discovered during lockdown that he makes a great delivery driver (photo: Manu Palomeque)

Brian Whiting, MD of Whiting and Hammond, has discovered during lockdown that he makes a great delivery driver (photo: Manu Palomeque)


We spoke with the MD of Whiting and Hammond to see how he has been coping during lockdown

Who did you miss the most?

I missed the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Everywhere feels very quiet and a little eerie. I like the noise coming from the pubs, as my office is attached to one of our sites and it’s been very odd with no one around and no sounds of people chatting and eating. Most of all I miss the ringing of the tills as it’s been very hard with so little money coming in to keep the operations ticking over.

Where did you miss going?

I do miss popping into all the pubs, doing the rounds and seeing my teams and the buzz of everyone chatting and having fun.

Who did you speak to the most other than those in your home?

My managers, we have all been in daily contact as it’s been important for me to make sure they are OK. We are a close family run business and work as a team, we’ve all missed the banter and meetings together. We have found WhatsApp a great business tool to keep in touch.

What changes did you have to make to your business?

There may be more changes to come; it depends on how long we will be closed for. My managers have taken the time to make sure everything is clean and tidy, including spotless kitchens and beautiful gardens ready for when we can re-open. We have kept The Rose & Crown in Green Street Green open for take-aways and are running a delivery and pick up operation with a limited menu of our pub classics. It’s early days but we have our fingers crossed it will become a continued successful part of the business when we reopen.

We are already making plans to run the wood-fired pizza oven throughout the winter, which would normally be hibernated, We have also done a collaboration with our wine suppliers so that our customers get a 15 per cent discount plus free delivery if they order through entering the code whiting&hammond5 to get the full discount. Saves queuing at the supermarket!

What did you learn during lockdown?

That I’m a great delivery driver! During busy times I have helped with the delivery of food and drink but I’m glad I’m in the car rather than on a bike, as some have been a long way away! It has put a smile on a lot of faces, which during times like these is surely a good thing.

We have also been able to deliver some food to vulnerable people whose own families can no longer call in on them.

Where will be the first place you go to eat or drink once this is over?

A nice cold pint and a bite to eat will be well deserved! Hopefully the sun will be shining so I can sit in the garden at The Chaser Inn, Shipbourne and admire the work Duke and his team have done during the lockdown.

What positives can you take from this?

As long as all our loved ones are safe and sound then I will look forward to life returning to normal. Life in this industry is non-stop as we are open seven days a week 365 days a year so there is no time to stop.

Time to think and look at our pubs in a different way and seeing what needs doing has been good and something when busy we don’t get the opportunity to do. Not that I want them to be empty, but it gives us the time to think and get organised ready for everyone to come and visit.

The other positive is my staff, seeing those who are happy to go above and beyond for us; there have truly been some shining lights. I couldn’t have asked for more and will be forever grateful.

Instagram: @whitingandhammond

Twitter: @whitingandhammond

More from People

Mon, 14:48

Like any place of learning, an independent school should be a second home, somewhere pupils can count on for support and inspiration as they develop as individuals.

Read more
Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Tradition continues at Chartwell, the family home of Sir Winston Churchill in Westerham, with the arrival of its newest recruit – a marmalade cat named Jock

Read more
Monday, August 3, 2020

Phil Wise, Head of the Senior School at Kent College Canterbury (KC), shares the benefits of pastoral care and why student welfare should be the number one priority for any school.

Read more

Nina Callow reveals why she’s documenting her family’s life in lockdown

Read more

A High Sheriff whose year has been brought to a standstill before it’s even begun, Remony Millwater has gained impressive new social media skills

Read more
Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Sir Mick Jagger on his Dartford roots, his lifelong buddy Keith Richards and why fans still flock to stand on Platform Two of the local train station

Read more

With light at the end of the Covid tunnel at last, we take heart from how Kent recovered from previous calamities, from the 1930s depression to two world wars and the credit crunch

Read more

The Bishop of Dover, Rose Hudson-Wilkin, MBE, on her pioneering career, the power of faith and why we should care for one another now more than ever

Read more
Tuesday, June 23, 2020

We spoke to six of Kent’s leading business people about how they have kept going through the coronavirus

Read more
Tuesday, June 23, 2020

We caught up with Will Edge, founder and distiller at Greensand Ridge Distillery to see how he has been coping during lockdown

Read more
Kent Life Food & Drink awards. Open for entries.

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Local Business Directory

Search For a Car In Your Area

Most Read

Latest from the Kent Life